Venice: June 1520, 6-10

Pages 47-61

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 3, 1520-1526. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1869.

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June 1520, 6–10

June 7. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxviii. p. 471. 66. Intelligence received through the German Warehouse that letters written from Frankfort on three different days, to German merchants, announced the arrival of the Emperor off the coast of England on the 26th May.
June 7. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxviii. p. 522. 67. The Valley of Ardres.
Letter dated Ardres, 7th June 1520, describing the interview between his most Christian Majesty and the King of England.
On the morning of the 7th June Cardinal Wolsey went to King Francis and dined with him, after which he departed, accompanied a good way by the Admiral, the Master of the Horse, and the Marshal de Chatillon. At about 5 p.m. two pieces of artillery were discharged as a signal, notifying to the King of England that King Francis was then taking to horse, and thus did he; King Henry on the other hand firing a third gun.
King Francis rode a very beautiful bay horse, caparisoned with embroidery and pearls. He himself wore a doublet of very costly cloth of gold and a cloak of the same material, and his jerkin, embroidered and slashed, was of great value. On his breast he wore sundry rich and beautiful jewels, and likewise on his cap, which was of black velvet. He was preceded by the military trumpeters, the fifers, and horn players, who performed one after the other. After the musicians came a great number of gentlemen of the Chamber and Wardrobe, all richly clad in cloths of gold and silver slashed in a variety of fashions, many of them having gold chains round their necks. The Switzers followed in battle array, with their drum major, and then came the King's macers, also in slashed garments of cloth of gold and silk, with massive gold chains of various sorts. The King followed, and was immediately in advance of the ambassadors and the princes of the blood royal and the barons, all in doublets of gold “soprarico,” (fn. 1) many of which were slashed, exhibiting other gold beneath, and many wore cloaks like the King. Amongst the rest was the Admiral, who, besides gold and silver “soprarizi,” had a sailor's gold whistle at his side, adorned with pearls and jewels of great price, his cap being decorated in like manner. Last of all came the archer guard on horseback. Outside Ardres a file of many gentlemen in pairs, who preceded all the others, were drawn up and ranged on the left-hand side. At no great distance from the town were the Queen and Madame [Louise] in a litter, they having come to see the pomp of France, and when the King drew nigh he quitted the ranks, conversing awhile with his mother, cap in hand, and then returned to his place. The procession rode thus for a league and half, and at length reached a hill overlooking a valley in whose hollow was a very costly and beautiful tent, and beyond was another similar eminence, on which were seen assembled all the attendants of the King of England, who came in the following order:—First, some 60 mounted bowmen with their bows and arrows, the King's guard, followed by well-nigh as many more, the guard of Cardinal Wolsey, whose gentlemen followed, all dressed in crimson velvet, with gold chains round their necks; next the trumpeters; then a good number of gentlemen well arrayed in brocade of gold, silver, and silk, all with chains; and then the sackbuts followed in advance of the barons and lords of the kingdom, who were dressed in gold “soprarizo” with massive chains, and in the midst of them were the ambassadors. Then came the King with his running footmen, in number six, dressed in crimson velvet and gold, the footmen of King Francis being clad in white velvet and silver.
King Henry wore cloth of very rich silver, “soprarizo” and a cap with black feathers, the feathers in the cap of King Francis being also black. King Henry rode a bay horse of the breed of the Duke of Termini, with trappings like those of King Francis, and perhaps more rich in jewels; his Majesty himself wearing a jewelled collar in lieu of a chain, of great value, and a jewelled belt besides no less costly.
To the left of the King was Cardinal Wolsey, preceded by two crosses, his Lordship being dressed in crimson satin.
Then followed eight coursers, the handsomest ever seen in the world, all trapped in various fashions, rich and superb, and ridden by pages clad in brocade and crimson velvet.
The cavalcade, having proceeded thus for some while, arrived at a level, where from 300 to 400 infantry were drawn up, and placed the King in their centre, they being dressed in velvet and cloth, and having no other weapon than the sword, with the exception of some hundred in front, who carried halberts.
In this array the English company reached the hill, and ranged themselves along its summit, the French doing the like in the opposite direction. Many of the attendants were sent back, most especially on the French side, because so great an amount of persons caused suspicion to King Henry, on which account certain gentlemen carried messages to and fro, as the French in like manner took umbrage at so great an amount of infantry. But everything was at length arranged; and when the Kings arrived at their respective hills, the trumpets sounded from both one and the other, and their Majesties immediately commenced descending. King Francis was accompanied by the Admiral and the Constable, the latter carrying the naked sword in his hand; another official doing the like by King Henry, who was also accompanied by Cardinal Wolsey. When the two sovereigns were within a stone's throw of each other, they spurred their horses, and cap in hand embraced mutually, but the hot temper of the horses keeping them apart, they returned to the embrace, and simultaneously, without waiting for the running footmen (two of whom accompanied each sovereign) to hold their stirrups, dismounted with the greatest possible agility, and again gracefully embraced and kissed each other, cap in hand, evincing great affection.
The attendants in like manner dismounted, and the two Kings, arm in arm, proceeded to the door of the tent, into which King Francis wished King Henry to enter first, but he refused, and during the contest both Kings remained cap in hand, and at length King-Francis took precedence, without, however, once quitting the arm of King Henry. Having thus entered the tent, they remained there about two hours, and then ordered the collation, after which Cardinal Wolsey called some of the chief personages of his retinue that they might pay their respects to King Francis, who had already quitted the tent together with King Henry, and he embraced them all. Then the Admiral called some of the chief French personages, who were very graciously embraced by King Henry, the French and English lords doing the like by each other, with profound obeisances down to the ground; whereupon another collation was served, and they drank together, both parties presenting another batch of noblemen, who all went on foot like the first, and were embraced by both their Majesties. All the gentlemen, especially the French, were served with as much beverage as they pleased.
A great number of horsemen then descended into the valley from both sides, and went to see the two Kings. The writer went down [from the French side], and remarked the extreme courtesy which prevailed. The two Kings at length mounted on horseback, embracing each other again and again, cap in hand, and took leave, King Francis embracing the English noblemen, and King Henry the Frenchmen. And thus they quitted each other, the English returning a distance of one mile to Guisnes, and King Francis to Ardres, where he arrived after nightfall. On the return his horse kicked the Admiral on the leg and the English ambassador also, but they were not seriously injured.
The magnificence of the two Kings and of their noblemen was great and incredible, but the French excelled the English, both in apparel and horses, although the English had many gold chains, which were not usual in France.
It is said a banquet will be given on Sunday the 10th; then on Monday the jousts will commence, after which other tournaments were to be held.
The noblemen of France had pitched tents near Ardres; two, under which King Francis would lodge, were of cloth of gold.
Ardres, 7th June 1520. Registered by Sanuto, 23rd June.
June 7. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxix. pp. 12, 13, 14. 68. Letter from the Court of France to the Magnifico Pietro Montemerlo, Royal Senator.
On Tuesday the 5th of June, the King of England came from Calais to Guisnes with the Queen and the whole court, accompanied by about 50 gentlemen. He rode a bay courser, and wore a garment of brocade ribbed with crimson satin, and on his head a hat trimmed with black feathers. He is a very handsome King, both in face and figure, and has a red beard, and his countenance resembles that of Giovanni Cristoforo Troto.
The Queen rode near him, on a palfrey, with the ladies; then came her litter of cloth of gold, followed by many other ladies; then a waggon (careta) covered with cloth of gold, drawn by six coursers; then ladies; and then three other similar waggons, of three colours, all covered with cloth of gold. The ladies were 20 in all, including Queen Mary, widow of King Lewis of France.
After the ladies came all the body-guard, namely, 200 archers; one half bowmen, and the other halberdiers, with doublets of green velvet and white satin; the breasts of the doublets being covered, like ours, with the King's arms, a rose surmounted by the crown.
On the Wednesday, at about the 20th hour, the English King mounted on horseback with some 50 archers and 100 gentlemen, and went to the lists appointed for the jousts. He had with him six coursers, trapped with crimson velvet, all covered with roses of beaten gold, and little bells; a fine sight. On arriving at the lists he made trial of the horses one after another, and he afterwards ran them one against the other, laughing the whole time, being in truth very merry, and he remained in the lists for upwards of two hours. Whilst there he was visited by Mons. de Chateaubriand, the brother “our” Mons. de Lautrec, and by other great personages, to whom he gave the best possible greeting.
Today, when the first conference was held, I went to Guisnes to see the procession of the King of England, which was as follows:—
First there were 2,000 in doublets, forming one batallion, handsome men, and in good array, with swords and bucklers, forming the vanguard; then the King's archers, 200 in number, with halberts. Next came some 400 gentlemen, all dressed in velvet, either black or crimson, and all wearing massive chains round their necks. They were followed by the lords (signori) of England, of whom not more than six or eight wore gold brocade; and including that material and “bigaroto,” those thus clad did not exceed 20 in number. Next came 12 mace bearers, then 12 trumpeters in green and white damask, then 12 heralds, all with the arms of England. The Constable of England followed with the drawn sword, preceding the King, who rode a light bay courser, and was dressed in a very beautiful doublet of cloth of silver, with a hood of cloth of gold at the back of his head, on which he wore a cap of black velvet, with a black feather which encircled the brim of the cap. (fn. 2) He had 12 stirrup-men, dressed in brocade and crimson velvet. Beside him was the Cardinal, after whom came two pages in doublets, half of cloth of gold and half of crimson, riding seven coursers, the handsomest ever seen, all trapped alike with gold and silver, the King's own horse being trapped in like manner. In this order they marched a foot's pace.
Having seen this procession I went to witness that of our King, which was in this fashion. There were no footmen, but about 400 horses, all gentlemen in good trim, the doublets of cloth of gold being in the proportion of 20 to 1 of any other material. Then came the Switzers with their feathers in their caps, reaching to the clouds; then the 12 trumpeters or “miquelets” with 12 heralds, and the trombones, who played the whole time. They were followed by the Duke of Lorraine, Alençon, Yendome, La Trimouille, the Admiral, Mons. de S. Pol, the Marshals, and several other lords, all covered with stiff gold brocade. Then Mons. de Lautrec and his two brothers, Mons. de L'Esparre and L'Escu, and Chateaubriand, with doublets of stiff cloth of gold, and over the doublets a simar of brocatel, all four in one fashion. Then the Constable in a doublet of stiff brocade, bearing the drawn sword in advance of the King, the Constable being preceded by the Master of the Horse, the latter and his horse being both covered with much embroidery.
Next came the most Christian King, on a courser whose trapper was completely covered with gold. He wore a doublet of stiff brocade, with a simar like that of Mons. de Lautrec, but of black brocade, all covered with precious stones. By his side were 12 stirrup-men, clad in brocatel with his device; and then followed a great crowd of gentlemen, and the archers and the captains, all glittering with gold. In this array the two Kings arrived at the site appointed for the conference. The place is a valley within the English Pale, called anciently “the Vale of Gold” (vol de oro), in the centre of which was a tent of cloth of gold on crimson, belonging to the King of England. But first they were to meet at the distance of a stone's throw from the tent, at a spear fixed in the ground.
At each extremity of the valley is a hill, the two hills being of equal height; the one French, the other English.
The two Kings descended from their respective hills simultaneously into the valley. They were accompanied solely by the two Constables with the drawn swords, and each had two stirrup-men. When at the distance of about 12 paces from each other, the King of England doffed his bonnet, and urged his horse forward, and the most Christian King did the like. Having embraced and said a few words, they then dismounted, and after again embracing and remaining thus a short while in each others arms, they then moved towards the tent, our King being always on the right hand. They entered the tent talking and laughing, followed by the English Cardinal and the Admiral. After remaining there for an hour, the Constable of England introduced our Constable; shortly after which the Kings came forth. Then the princes of both nations paid their respects to the Kings, the “Viscontino”[Anchises Visconti?] making his appearance dressed in the Albanian fashion, which pleased much. The Kings remained until after sunset, then again embraced and mounted on horseback, and repeated their embraces, being apparently unable to quit each other.
Dated 7th June. Registered by Sanuto, 5th July.
June 7–24. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxix, pp. 71–9. 69. Interview between King Francis I. and King Henry VIII.
On the 7th of the month of June 1520, the festival of the Corpus Domini, the two Kings of England and France held their first conference in a field situate between the Castle of Ardres, belonging to the King of France, and that of Guisnes, belonging to the King of England. The King of France made his appearance richly clad. . . . . . . He rode a beautiful tall Spanish horse, all black, richly trapped. . . . . .
The King quitted Ardres with his retinue about the 21st hour. On his road, near the gate outside the town, the Queen and Madame [Louise], with a great number of ladies and princesses, were placed to see him pass; and when in front of Madame, he went out of the line, cap in hand, and spoke to her, uncovered; and then, having received her blessing, he proceeded to the site of the conference, being constantly met by English lords and gentlemen sent to do him honour by the King of England; to whom in like manner French noblemen went on behalf of their sovereign. The bands of the captains of the archers of the King of France, with Monsr. de la Trimouille and Monsr. de la Palisse, kept back the crowd, and prevented others than those appointed from coming to the spot. . . . . . . . .
The procession of the King of England was as follows:—First, 60 archers on horseback with their bows and arrows, being the King's guard; and as many more, the body-guard of Cardinal Wolsey, followed. Next came the Cardinal's gentlemen, all in crimson velvet, with gold chains round their necks; then the trumpeters; then a number of gentlemen in gold and silver brocade, all with their chains, and in the midst the ambassadors according to their grades. Next came the King in person, with six stirrup-men in crimson velvet and gold; the stirrup-men of the most Christian King being in cloth of silver and white velvet. The King of England wore cloth of silver, and feathers on his head, with a jewelled collar of great value round his neck in lieu of a chain, besides which he had a girdle of great price. He rode a very beautiful bay horse, with trappings like those of the most Christian King, and perhaps more richly jewelled. Cardinal Wolsey was on the left hand of his Majesty, and in advance of him two silver crosses were borne; he was clad in crimson satin. Eight coursers followed, the handsomest ever seen, all trapped in different fashions, but costly and superb; they were ridden by pages in brocade with crimson velvet. The King having moved processionally thus, met in a field a band of from 3,000 to 4,000 footmen, who joined and followed him. These footmen had only their swords, and were dressed in various liveries, being preceded by others with halberts, all dressed alike in velvet and cloth. In this order the English drew up on the ridge of the hill; the French being opposite to them on the corresponding eminence. Into the valley formed by these two hills the most Christian King descended, accompanied only by Monsr. de Bourbon, High Constable, the Admiral [Bonnivet], and the Master of the Horse [San Severino].
The King of England in like manner descended, accompanied by Cardinal Wolsey, the High Constable [Marquis of Dorset], and the Master of the Horse [Sir Henry Guylford].
The two Kings met each other on horseback, and having embraced and kissed, and exchanged a few words, cap in hand, they simultaneously dismounted, and again embraced thrice, bowing to each other with marks of very great love; and, arm in arm, they entered a tent of cloth of gold belonging to the King of England, where they remained together alone for about an hour, being occasionally joined by Cardinal Wolsey and the Admiral of France.
Whilst the Kings remained in the tent, a number of silver-gilt cups were brought, nearly six feet high, (fn. 3) full of excellent wine, and other large gilt bowls with feet (piedi) of such a size that the hand could scarcely hold them; also spice cakes (un pocho forte). Liquor was distributed to all who would accept it, and they drank much, both on account of the heat and the great crowd. When the Kings came forth from the tent, the collation was served to them standing, and many lords and gentlemen from both sides descended into the valley on foot to the spot, the King of France embracing the Englishmen, and the King of England doing the like by the Frenchmen; and when the Kings returned to their lodgings it was already dark.
On the morrow, the 8th, when the three guns were fired as the appointed signal for departure, the two Kings proceeded with a small retinue to the site of the interview held on the preceding day to arrange the jousts by common consent; and they remained together for four hours, the collation being served with less ceremony than on the day before.
On the following Sunday the most Christian King went to Guis-nes, and the King of England to Ardres; the latter dining with the Queen of France, and the former with the Queen of England at a spot immediately outside the town of Guisnes, and over a bridge which traversed the moat.
The principle entrance of the Castle of Guisnes leads into a square court-yard, of which each side measures about 50 paces. Here, to the height of some three paces from the ground, the foundations are built of bricks, which support a planked floor, strewed all over with rushes, it being the custom thus to cover all the floors in England. Above this floor, externally, the building is partly of wood and partly of stones in squares, having the appearance of a real wall. This palace represents a square as aforesaid, and is divided into halls, saloons, and chambers, leading one into the other. Throughout the palace is adorned with silk and red roses, and the emblems of the King of England; and the platforms were similarly ornamented. But marvellous were the tapestries with which the whole palace was hung; all of gold and silk; some representing figures, others foliage, which it would not be possible to paint more beautifully; the figures really seemed alive. (fn. 4)
Outside this palace is a chapel completely covered with tissue (restagno) of gold and silver. On one side of the chapel is an altar, dedicated to the saint whose name the King bears, and on the other a similar altar consecrated to the Queen's patroness, both being most richly adorned with admirably painted altar-pieces, and ornaments necessary for the altar, all of massive gold, such as crosses, chalices, patens, paxes, basins, crewets, censers, and the like. The cloths in front of the altars are embroidered with pearls and precious stones of inestimable price. There are also two desks, at which the King and Queen kneel during the mass, the space being enclosed with cloth of gold, the canopy and cushions being of the same material. From these two great desks, through two large windows, there is visible the lower chapel, marvellously adorned with tapestry in like manner, with a highly decorated altar, where there are the seats of the chaplains who sing the mass and other divine services.
The King of France dined in the palace with the Queen of England. They were seated at the centre of the table opposite to each other under a costly canopy. Cardinal Wolsey dined at one of the extremities of the table. On the other side, some three yards distant from King Francis, the sister of the King of England, la Blanche Reine (fn. 5) [Mary], widow of the late King Lewis, now Duchess of Suffolk, was placed; and no other person sat at the table. The viands were more dainty and exquisite than can be told, and their description is therefore omitted. Constantly during dinner the most excellent vocal and instrumental music was heard; a better performance was not possible. In the other halls a number of Lords and Princes who had accompanied the most Christian King dined, and after dinner there was a ball until night, the King himself dancing, and part of the time he made love to the ladies there. (fn. 6)
The like form of feasting and dancing was observed with regard the King of England by the Queen of France at Ardres; the Cardinal de Boissi sat at table with the King, instead of Cardinal Wolsey, and in lieu of la Blanche Reine the Duchess of Alençon, the most Christian King's sister. The decoration of this [French] palace was very beautiful, but neither so beautiful nor so costly as that of England, though as a match for the palace of Guisnes, the most Christian King pitched a marvellous tent, all of cloth of gold and tissue, with colours and figures, these cloths of gold being visible both within and without. As it was not completed on the 10th, the banquet took place in the palace within the town of Ardres.
On the morrow, the 11th, the jousts commenced, and were attended by both the Queens, with a very great number of most noble ladies, all vieing with each other in beauty and ornamented apparel, and for love of them each of the jousters endeavoured to display his valour and prowess, in order to find more favour with his sweetheart. And thus did they assemble daily to witness sword-fighting on horseback and on foot, and other tournaments and representations of war.
This lasted from the 11th of June to the 22nd, with interruptions on account of bad weather and other unavoidable causes. During this interval both parties kept open house like perfect friends, giving hope of good-will and union between these two nations, which for many years have been bred in hatred of each other; this change being effected through the wisdom and virtue of both the sovereigns, who are anxious for the peace of Christendom. . . . . .
The above-mentioned entertainments being ended, Cardinal Wolsey, on Saturday the 23rd of June, sang a solemn mass in the presence of the Kings and Queens, and of all the other princes, lords, and ladies, on the site of the conference between the two sovereigns, after which he gave plenary indulgence to all present; and the first stone was laid for the foundation and erection of a beautiful Church, entitled, “Our Lady of Friendship” (nostra Dona de la Amistà), to be built, provided with sacerdotal ornaments, and endowed at the cost of the two Kings; and such a number of chaplains is to be appointed as shall seem fit to them.
They also agreed, at their common cost, to build in that valley a very handsome palace, promising to visit each other there once every year.
On the 24th, the day of St. John the Baptist, they separated, both being in tears (as were well nigh all the others), by reason of the tender love contracted by them reciprocally; the most Christian King returning to Paris, and the King of England to Calais; both being not a little anxious still to remain together.
Every faithful Christian should pray God to render this fraternal union of the two Kings perpetual, for the benefit of Christendom and the advancement of our religion.
Registered by Sanuto, 31st July.
June 8. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxviii. p. 525- 527. 70. Giovanni Badoer and Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassadors in France, to the Signory.
Badoer arrived at the Court late on the 4th, and on the morrow went with Giustinian to the most Christian King, who was with four English gentlemen of authority, namely the Lord Prior of St. John's [Sir Thomas Docwra], the Governor of Calais [Sir John Peachey], the Captain of Guisnes [Sir Nicholas Yaux], and a fourth, whose name they did not remember.
The King, after some little delay, came forth from a chamber with the four English gentlemen into the hall, where they (Badoer and Giustinian) were. The King said that Cardinal Wolsey and many other English ministers had been to him several times, but he did not explain the purport of their negotiations. The interview with the King of England would take place on the morrow.
At 5 p.m. three guns were fired in the English camp as a signal for their Majesties to mount on horseback. This King Francis did, being preceded first by some 400 gentlemen on horseback in excellent array; and in advance of the King's person were others, with the guard of the hundred Switzers on foot. Immediately before the King went the Constable, holding in his hand a drawn sword, he and his horse being most richly apparelled; the Master of the Horse who preceded him bearing another sword, which was sheathed, and his apparel being no less sumptuous; the Admiral carrying his symbol, the whistle, both he and his horse being covered with jewels, pearls, and other ornaments.
The King was followed by all the princes of the blood, and the ambassadors, on very handsome horses, all clad in gold and silver “soprarizo” [query, tissue], the ornaments of the horses being of the same material. First, Monsr. d'Alençon, with the Papal Legate [Bibiena ?] on his right hand; then the Duke of Lorraine, with the Imperial ambassador; then Badoer, with Monsr. de Vendome; then Antonio Giustinian, with Monsr. de St. Pol, the brother of Monsr. de Vendome; the Ferrarese ambassador, with Monsr. de Lautrec; other personages following in succession; after whom came the guard of halberdiers on horseback. The captains of the two guards did not allow anybody to approach. Whilst on the march several messages were exchanged between the Kings, by a number of gentlemen, to enforce observance of the articles stipulated, that none of the princes of the blood should carry arms, but only King Francis himself, who rode a most beautiful bay horse, which, as it surpassed all the others in beauty, so did the apparel and caparisons of rider and horse exceed those of all others in magnificence.
Thus they proceeded as far as the descent into a valley, in which was a tent of gold “usoprarizo”[tissue?], the “tiracha” being of silver “soprarizo. 3' On arriving at the descent, the King commanded Monsr. de Lautrec to make all halt. His Majesty alone, with the Constable, the Admiral, and the Master of the Horse proceeded into the valley, and the King of England did the like. They met at a short distance from the tent, and having saluted each other on horseback, dismounted at the same moment and lovingly embraced; after which they entered the tent (the most Christian King standing on the right), each sovereign being accompanied by the three personages with whom he had descended into the valley. When they had remained thus no long while, Cardinal Wolsey entered the tent, and shortly afterwards all came forth, and having continued a short time in front of the tent, took leave of each other caps in hand, making mutual obeisances.
Lix [Linck ?], 8th June 1520. Registered by Sanuto, 23rd June.[Italian.]
June 8. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxviii. p. 527. 71. Antonio Surian, Venetian Ambassador with Henry VIII., to the Signory.
The King of England quitted Calais on the 5th, at 3 p.m., and, accompanied by the Papal nuncio, the French ambassador, and by him (Surian), went to Guisnes.
On the 7th, at 5 p.m. (cercha horre 20), Cardinal Wolsey having returned from the French Court, King Henry gave the signal by three cannon shots, and quitted Guisnes, accompanied by all the lords and barons, and by the ambassadors, proceeding towards the place appointed for the future interview. Whilst on the march the French Court sent certain delegates to inspect the number of the King's retinue and guard, amounting to some 4,000 (sic) infantry, whether they bore arms or not, and found that, according to the articles, they carried no weapons. The like inspection was made by the English with regard to the French, and with the same result.
The march continued thus as far as the spot where the procession halted, when the King, Cardinal Wolsey, and the Marquis of Dorset (who carried the drawn sword), on horseback, and the Master of the Horse and the English ambassador accredited to the King of France (and who had then returned to King Henry), walking, proceeded to the tent.
The negotiations of the two Kings and Cardinal Wolsey concerned an adjustment of the disputes between the Emperor and King Francis; and, inter alia, they were endeavouring to arrange a conference with the Emperor, who was at a short distance thence.
Dated 8th June. Registered by Sanuto, 23rd June.
June 8. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxix. p. 19. 72. Paulo Camillo Triulzi to-.
Yesterday the two Kings had an interview, at 6 p.m.
Our King was accompanied by the Constable, the Admiral, and by three on foot to hold the horses.
With the other King were the Master of the Horse of England, and the Cardinal, and three on foot.
On Sunday England will come here to sup with the Queen. Our King will go to sup with the other Queen.
On Monday the jousts will commence. There will be as close a union between these Kings as if they were brothers.
The King of England is a handsome prince, the most jovial (allegro) I ever saw, and seems as well pleased with this interview as if he had gained a great realm. I have seen a temporary house built by him, said to have cost 100,000 francs, the handsomest ever beheld; never did I see so beautiful or so costly a palace. The [French] King's tent is a stupendous sight.
Ardres, 8th June 1520. Registered by Sanuto, 5th July.
June 8. Mantran Archives. 73. Soardino, Mantuan Ambassador at the Court of France, to the Marquis of Mantua.
Cardinal Wolsey had held a long conference with the King of France. On the morrow the Admiral went to Calais to confer with the King of England. On the following days great personages passed to and fro between the two Courts; and Cardinal Wolsey had two long conferences, which were attended only by the most Christian King, the Admiral, the Chancellor [Anthony Duprat], Robertet, and the Bishop of Paris. Cardinal Wolsey was accompanied by two other Englishmen, and besides discussing the manner in which the meeting was to take place, a negotiation (not yet concluded) was treated for the Emperor's attendance at this conference, he being in Flanders at 20 leagues from Ardres. On the eve of the Corpus Domini the King of England went from Guisnes (where he arrived on the preceding day from Calais) with the Queen, to the site of the lists, where Mons. de Lautrec received [his promise to meet the King of France on the morrow, an Englishman receiving a similar promise from his most Christian Majesty. On Thursday morning Cardinal Wolsey returned to Ardres and dined with the King in state, the Lord Steward [Sieur de Boissi] waiting at table. After dinner so many difficulties arose that it was feared the conference would not take place; but at length all was arranged.
Cardinal Wolsey having quitted Ardres after dinner at about 3 p.m. and returned to Guisnes, the [French] procession moved to the appointed spot, which was a valley within the English territory, about one and a half mile beyond the French borders, where two mounds, one on each side of the valley, were raised expressly for this occasion, distant a bow-shot one from the other; and in the midst of the valley a tent of cloth of gold was pitched. Chatillon, Marshal of France and governor of Picardy, rode first, and after him the princes. . . . . .The most Christian King rode the “bay jumper “ (fn. 7) of the Mantuan stud, “which your late father gave him at Milan.”
After his Majesty, Mons. d'Alençon, side by side with the Papal nuncio, followed.
All the princes—including Lorraine and Vendôme—brought their ladies, and the Princesses of Navarre were also there.
The cavalcade having commenced their march, Chatillon was sent to number the English troops, an Englishman having come to number ours. Chatillon reported that the English had some 1,500 foot men more than their [stipulated] number. His Majesty replied, “Having come thus far, I will not fail to keep my promise, and gratify my wish, on this account,” and ascended the mound, “on our side.” The King of England did the like in the opposite direction, and their respective companies being ranged in line along the two mounds, the Kings quitted them, and met each other in the centre of the valley. The most Christian King was accompanied by the Constable and the Admiral on horseback, and by the Master of Horse on foot, with a few stirrup men. With the King of England were Cardinal Wolsey, his Constable, his Master of the Horse, and stirrup men in like manner. . . . . .
Lisen [Linck?], 8th June 1520.
P.S-The English had few horses compared with ours, perhaps less by one half. The French were the more richly and more elegantly dressed, (fn. 8) for although the English had much gold, there was no comparison as regards elegance and costliness; but they were superior both in the quantity and thickness of their gold chains. Of their horses, but few were coursers. The King wore a garment of ribbed cloth of silver, a cap of black velvet with a plume of black feathers, the collar of the Garter round his neck, and a massive gold girdle. He rode a bay (morello) Neapolitan courser, on whose trappings and headpiece were a number of bells nearly the size of an egg, and which from their sound were of gold. Besides his own foot-guard of 100 halberdiers, he had a band of some 3,500 men on foot, all with swords and bucklers in the English fashion, so that, including horse and foot, he had upwards of 6,000 fighting men. Our force might amount to 3,000 horse and 1,000 foot, including the Switzers, and stirrup men in attendance on their masters' horses.
June 9. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxviii. p. 503. 74. Alvise Gradenigo, Venetian Ambassador at Rome, to the Signory.
Friar Martin Luther, in Germany, is very much followed by the Duke of Saxony and other Lords (Signori), who have written in his defence to the Pope, telling him to send any one he pleases to dispute with Luther, who will show that what he preaches and says is perfectly true, and based on the words of Christ.
Dated the 9th. Registered by Sanuto, 16th June.
June 10. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxix. p. 1. 75. Francesco Cornaro, Venetian Ambassador with the Emperor Charles V., to the Signory.
On the 6th June the Emperor was at Ghent, awaiting the result of the interview between the Kings of France and England, at which Cardinal Wolsey was endeavouring to make peace between the Emperor and France. He (the Cardinal) wishes a triple conference to be held. Tomorrow the Emperor departs for Brussels, to hold a parliament; after which he is to have another conference with the King of England, as a demonstration merely, and will then go to Aix-la-Chapelle for his coronation as King of the Romans.
Ghent, 10th June. Registered by Sanuto, 1st July.
June 10. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxix. p. 20. 76. Paulo Camillo Triulzi to —.
Yesterday the two Kings were together in the lists for two hours, and exchanged the horses they rode. This morning our King went to dine with the Queen of England, and the King of England came to dine here. Tomorrow the jousts will commence. We shall not leave this place for 12 days.
Ardres, 10th June 1520. Registered by Sanuto, 5th July.
June 10–21. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxix. p. 23. 77. Giovanni Badoer and Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassadors in France, to the Signory.
Early in the morning of the 10th the most Christian King went with 10 of his attendants to the Castle of Guisnes. The King of England immediately went to meet him, and having embraced each other the King of England gave him a collar of jewels and pearls of great value. After remaining a short while, the King of France returned, but first gave in exchange to the King of England his gold bracelets studded with jewels of great value, and doubting whether the gift was an equivalent for the present received, he sent in addition six coursers of great price.
The next morning the King of England came to see the most Christian King at Ardres before he was out of bed. On the 25th the most Christian King will go to Paris; and the English King is again to confer with the Emperor, who is now at Brussels, but who is to come to Gravelines, four miles from Calais.
Dated 10–21 June. Registered by Sanuto, 6th July.
June 10–25. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxix. pp. 42–44. 78. Count Alexandro Donato to Z. F. Griti.
On Sunday the 17th, the most Christian King and his mother were to go to Guisnes to dine with the Queen of England; the King of England going to Ardres to dine with the French Queen, accompanied by his sister la Blanche Reine (Regina bianca), wife of the Duke of Suffolk. The Kings were to leave their lodgings simultaneously, to meet half way, and then proceed to their respective destinations.
The most Christian King without notice anticipated the hour, and with only 10 horsemen went to Guisnes, and entered the courtyard of the castle. On hearing this the King of England hastened below, and embraced him. King Francis said, “My brother, here am I your prisoner.” . . . . . .
On the 19th the King of England went suddenly to Ardres with only three companions, and entered the chamber of the most Christian King when he was scarcely out of bed. . . . . . . .
On Saturday the 23rd, Cardinal Wolsey sang high mass in the presence of the Kings and Queens, and of Madame, on the spot Avhere the sovereigns held their first conference, and as Cardinal Legate gave plenary indulgence to all present, and the first stone was laid for the foundation of a beautiful church to be entitled “Notre Dame de la meste.” (fn. 9). . . . . .
Then on the 24th, the day of St. John the Baptist, the two Kings took leave of each other, not without tears.
Dated from the 10th to the 25th of June.
Registered by Sanuto, 12th July.
June 10–26. Sanuto Diaries, v. xxix. p. 39. 79. Giovanni Badoer and Antonio Giustinian, Venetian Ambassadors in France, to the Signory.
On—June, at the usual site of the conferences, high mass was sung by Cardinal Wolsey in the presence of the Kings and Queens and lords; after which the two Kings took leave of each other with very great marks of good will. The Queen of England gave a very beautiful diamond and a ruby in a ring to the most Christian King; and the Queen of France gave two other rings of equal value to the King of England. The Kings gave orders for building a church and a palace on the border, at their common cost. The most Christian King then departed for Boulogne and the King of England for Calais, the latter intending to go to Gravelines for an interview with the Emperor.
Dated 10–26 June. Registered by Sanuto, 12th July.


  • 1. Qu. tissue.
  • 2. “Che la veniva tutta davanti allo intorno di la bereta”
  • 3. “Alti quasi do braza.”
  • 4. “Veramente le figure pareano vive.”
  • 5. “La Regina Bianca.”
  • 6. “Stete in amorosi rasonamenti cum quelle donne.”
  • 7. “II morello saltatore.”
  • 8. “Molto più richamente vestiti et con piu galla.”
  • 9. L'Amitié? See p. 55.