S. E. T. c. I.
98. De Puebla to Ferdinand and Isabella.
Wrote to Ferdinand and Isabella, on the 30th of May,
through a messenger of Diego de Soria, who promised to
be at Burgos on St. John's day. Sent another despatch viâ
The inclosure (fn. 1) of this letter contains a relation of all the
essential negotiations in England.
Has spoken quite confidentially with Henry, who had
explained his views, sometimes in long speeches, sometimes
in few, but always in most bland words. The Latin Secretary
afterwards brought a letter from Henry, and the draft of a
treaty, declaring and swearing, in the name of the King, that
the intentions of Henry were better than those which he
had shown in his conversation, and much better than the
conditions contained in the treaty. Speaks daily with all the
other English statesmen concerned in the negotiation. They
give him the same assurances.
Offers of the King
Conduct of the
King of the
"Your Highnesses may judge for yourselves whether, after
the new offers of the King of France to the King of England,
of which I spoke in my last letter, and the notorious enmity
shown by the King of the Romans to the father of the King of
England (fn. 2) , the King of England has given an improper answer,
especially if it be considered how badly all things are
prepared (as I have written), and how the King of the
Romans behaves. He did not say a word of his alliance with
your Highnesses, nor did he choose to give a clear answer, or
speak of the marriage of the Infanta. Before you sent
hither (to England), he did not even mention his alliance
with France. For this reason, the Latin Secretary made great
difficulties about allowing me to copy the treaty, saying that
it would be very unpleasant if the copy were taken, for
every day couriers, with letters and other papers, were being
intercepted. He gave me to understand that Henry had good
reasons (since he was on such bad terms with the King of the
Romans, the Archduke, and Flanders,) to wish to be at any
rate on good terms with the King of France, the French
people, and their adherent the King of Scotland, without concluding
any alliance with your Highnesses." (fn. 3)
Sends a copy of the instructions which he brought from
Spain, and of the answer of the King of England.
If they only wish to put off Henry and his council with
vain hopes, and not to conclude the treaties with England,
the best thing would be to write a letter full of "sweet
things" (cosas dulces) to him. He would show it to the
English, upon whom such things made a deep impression. The
difficulties are very great on account of the continual offers
which the King of France makes "by real deeds" (conobra a
fecho) to most of the council, whilst the behaviour of the
King of the Romans, who is justly disliked, is exactly the
Duke of York.
"Friday, the 3rd of July, the so-called Duke of York came
to England with all the ships and troops he had been able to
obtain from the Duchess Margaret, the Archduke, and Flanders.
A portion of his troops disembarked, but the people
rose up in arms against them without the intervention of a
single soldier of the King. The peasants of the adjacent
villages made great havock on the troops who had disembarked,
and if the vessels had not been at hand not a single
man of them would have escaped alive. A hundred and fifty
were slain, and eighty made prisoners, among whom were
eight captains, two of them being Spaniards, Don Fulano
de Guevara (he is said to be a brother or nephew of Don
Ladron) and Diego el Coxo (the Lame), the name which all
the villagers gave him, saying, that the King came (fn. 4) , and
that he may go to his father and mother, who still live in
France, and are well known ; and they hold it to be as
true as Gospel, as it really is, that this affair is like that of
the Duke of Clarence, who was crowned King of Ireland,
and afterwards discovered to be the son of a barber. They
had no great reasons for congratulating themselves, and had
gone, it is believed, to Ireland or Scotland ; for it is not probable
that they would return to Flanders, because the whole
of that country is almost ruined, in consequence of their
staying there, the King of England not having permitted
any commerce with the Flemings, in which their principal
riches and their life consists. Doctor De Puebla is very sorry
for these foolish things, for such are they generally believed
to be by those who have any knowledge of the affair. Certainly,
if the King of the Romans uphold the Duke of York
and xxiiij (fn. 5) , it would be very difficult to conclude what
your Highnesses wish. I think that all that the King of
the Romans does is done by the instigation of the King
of France. If your Highnesses had taken care earlier of
the matter, all this would have been avoided. Nevertheless,
it is not too late, even now, if your Highnesses like it." (fn. 6)
"Your Highnesses may also see whether it will be well to
inform the Pope what they here (the English) will answer,
in order that he may, without delay, send letters not only
to Henry, but also to the Cardinal and the Lord Privy
Seal, that such spoliation of the Church and violence to the
Pope in the Cardinal till the restitution to the Pope of
what belongs to him. They say he will do his duty." (fn. 7)
The succour which the English were to give to the French
is delayed, probably for ever, in consequence of his [De
Puebla's] arrival in England.
King of the
It seems desirable that the person who will bring the letter
of the Pope to England should be empowered, at the same time,
to procure a reconciliation between Henry and the King of
the Romans. The father of the King of the Romans (fn. 8) had
already desired this reconciliation, which is now much more
desirable. Has seen a letter from the Neapolitan ambassador
at the Court of the King of the Romans to the Neapolitan
ambassador in England, in which the latter is desired not to
leave England, but to remain and to procure the reconciliation.
It is certain that the reconciliation can be effected by the
Pope, or by Ferdinand and Isabella. Though this reconciliation
will not be so great an advantage now as it would have
been if effected whilst the "Duke of York" was in Flanders,
it may still be concluded, especially if Ferdinand and Isabella
are inclined to marry their daughter to Prince Arthur.
The English have repeatedly declared that they are at
liberty to send succour to the Pope, and to make war against
France. Found nothing in Navarre but bad, and in
England nothing but good, feeling (towards Spain). The
alliance of England in a war with France is worth as
much as the friendship of the two most powerful Princes in
Christendom, especially as the King of England will never
ask Ferdinand and Isabella to begin war. "Such being his
disposition, as I have said, the father of the King of
England will be under an obligation towards your Highnesses,
but not your Highnesses towards the King of
England. (fn. 9)
De Puebla has known the ambassador of Naples very
intimately for eight years without betraying any one of his
secrets. Henry has communicated to the ambassador of Naples
the whole affair. That may prove to have been inconsiderate,
because many officers of the King of Naples go over to the
King of France. If the King of France should write anything
about the matter, Ferdinand and Isabella must not think that
he has betrayed them. He is a faithful servant.
This and the other messengers are perfectly trustworthy.
—London, 19th of July 1495.
Spanish, intermixed with cipher, pp. 7½. The original
deciphering is preserved, but it is rather confused.
S. E. T. c. I.
99. Ferdinand and Isabella, to De Puebla.
Have received his letters of the 30th of May and 22nd of
Are very glad that he had arrived in such good time, though
he had been ill on the road.
Are satisfied with what he did on his way to England.
Have always expected that he would be well received by
Affairs of Navarre.
If Henry inquires into the affairs of Navarre, he may
tell him that the Constable of Navarre has delivered all
his towns, villages, and fortresses into their hands, and they
have also the Princess of Navarre, the daughter of the King
and Queen, in their power.
Henry has complained that they correspond with the
person who calls himself Duke of York. The fact is, the
so-called Duke of York and the old Duchess Margaret had
written to them once at Barcelona, asking their protection.
They had sent no answer to the pretended Duke of York, but
only to the Duchess, showing her that the whole affair was
an imposture. The Duchess made no reply, nor have they
written any other letter to any other person about the Duke.
The observations of Henry respecting the delay in sending
an embassy to him do not require any answer.
War with France.
Henry says that he is at perfect liberty to make alliances
with whom he likes, and to declare war against France.
They never had any doubt about it. According to the
fashion in which Charles fulfils his obligations towards his
friends, Henry must have recovered that liberty long ago.
Are likewise free from all obligations towards France because
of the manner in which the French kept their promises ; of
which more in the enclosed memoir.
Marriage of the
As to what Henry says of the marriage between the Princess
Katharine and the Prince of Wales, they are not disinclined
to the marriage, but wish well to all parties, and
therefore desire, first, that a reconciliation should take place
between Henry and the King of the Romans. Had written
to their ambassadors at the Court of Maximilian to try
their best with him, and they now send the result to
De Puebla. Their intention to marry one of their daughters
to a son of Maximilian, and another to a son of Henry,
will be the best security that the treaty between Henry
and Maximilian will be fulfilled. Neither the King of the
Romans, nor his son the Archduke, will assist the person
who calls himself Duke of York. Nevertheless, if the King
of the Romans lend him assistance, then they promise to lend
assistance to Henry against the so-called Duke of York.
Respecting the marriage, there will be very little to
transact, as the conditions were settled in the former treaty ;
but he must sign nothing before Henry is reconciled to
Maximilian. They will send authority to sign the treaty
as soon as the reconciliation has taken place.
Their answer to the observations of Henry, in the matter
touching the Pope, is that the Pope was afraid his
messenger might be intercepted. He had therefore only
written to them, asking them to write to the other Christian
Princes. But even that was not necessary, as every good
Christian would hasten to assist the Pope without being asked
to do so, as soon as he knew that the Pope was in danger.
The injuries done to the Pope by the King of France are
Henry has asked whether Ferdinand and Isabella have
entered the league. They have not only entered it, but are
the principal members of it, in conjunction with the Pope, the
King of the Romans, and the Dukes of Venice and Milan.
There is time still for Henry to enter into it. If he does,
all the other affairs which are pending will soon be satisfactorily
He has written that the son of Henry is to be married
to the daughter of the King of the Romans.
"On this subject there is nothing to be said. The said son
of Henry will conclude the marriage with the Princess Katharine,
and the son of the King of the Romans will
marry a daughter of Ferdinand and Isabella."
King of France.
The King of France has asked assistance and money from
Henry, offering security for it. But Henry must know best
whether it will be to his advantage to make the King of
France still greater than he now is. The King of France
bides his time, and when an opportunity offers itself he does
just what he likes, and as he is acting now, without any
regard to friend or foe. He would soon forget the greatest
services he had received. Therefore, the English must always
be on their guard (estar sobre el aviso) with the King of
France, and he must prevent Henry and his council from
being deceived by France. Henry should immediately make
preparations for war in order to be ready for any emergency.
De Puebla must be very careful and diligent, write every
day what he has done, and send his letters by special couriers.
A letter for Master Pedro (Peter Carmelianus), the Latin
secretary of King Henry, is enclosed. Thank him for his
services, and promise him favour and money. (fn. 10)
"After this had been written, it was reported in Spain, that
the person who was staying in Flanders was preparing an
expedition to England, at which we were much astonished.
For we have always written (to the King of the Romans)
and to our ambassadors at his court to prevent such a thing.
As we were told that the Duke of Milan (fn. 11) would be of great
advantage in this matter, we have sent him an ambassador.
We know that the Duke has written to the King of the
Romans, but are not aware of the contents of his letter.
When all this was written, letters from the Spanish ambassadors
at the Court of the King of the Romans arrived, by
which we learn that the King (of the Romans) intends
to do right in this matter, and wishes to get rid of him,
and the ambassadors believe that this and the importunity
of the Duchess Margaret (who has brought together the
few soldiers who accompany him) were the causes why
he left Flanders. It is reported that he has gone to an
island whence, he said, he would embark for England. He
was in such bad condition, and had so few soldiers, that
he did not sail. In fact all the Spaniards who are in
Flanders say they believe the whole fleet will soon be dispersed
for want of money and men. If, therefore, the
King of the Romans does not lend further help, the whole
affair will come to nothing."
Such being the case, he must do his best to reconcile
Henry to the King of the Romans. "On no condition must
the King of England renew his alliance with the King of
France, or lend him money, for that would make him
many enemies in his own kingdom and abroad, from whom
he might receive great inconvenience."
Notwithstanding the answer of Henry, he is to persuade
him to treat the Spanish merchants in England in a better
Indorsed : "Copy of the despatch which was written in
cipher to Doctor De Puebla and sent by Juan de
Santa Gadea, courier, whom he sent, and who left
Burgos on the 20th of July '95."
Draught written by Miguel Perez de Almazan, Secretary
of State. Spanish. pp. 10.
S. E. T. c. I.
100. Memoir of what has taken place between Ferdinand and
Isabella and the King Of France.
When the treaty was concluded by which Perpignan was
to be delivered to them, the King of France demanded that
20 principal towns of Spain should give security for the
fulfilment of it, offering, on his side, that 20 French towns
should give the same as security. This clause was incorporated
in the treaty, signed and sworn to, with the addition
that the securities must be given within three months' time,
under threat of heavy penalties, excommunication, and dissolution
of the whole treaty. They have rigorously fulfilled
all their obligations, but the King of France has not given
his securities up to the present day.
They sent their ambassador, Alphonso de Silva, to the King
of France when he began to interfere in the affairs of Naples,
and asked him to submit his claims to arbitration. In case
the decision should be in his favour, they promised to assist
him in recovering the kingdom of Naples, and proposed that he
should employ his great armaments against the Moors beyond
(the Straits). They even offered him a place in Africa which
they had conquered, from which to begin his operations. Told
him, further, he might retain all his conquests, though the
conquests (in Africa) belonged by right to them. All this
they had done, only "for the glory of God, and the oppression
of the Infidels." There were good prospects of an easy conquest,
the Moors being much debilitated by hunger and pestilence.
The King of France, however, not only rejected all
these proposals, but had also treated their ambassador so badly
that he could not have been worse treated by their enemies.
They did not, even then, begin war upon the King of
France. Did not even oppose his designs upon Naples,
although they had received letters telling them that the least
encouragement from them would have rendered the conquest
of that realm a very difficult task for the French. At last the
King of France went to Ostia, seized upon the property of the
Church, went to Rome, and treated the Pope so badly "that
the Turks would not have treated him worse." As all
Christian Princes are obliged to assist the Pope and the
Church, they might have opposed the French without being
unfaithful to their alliance ; but they preferred first to send
their ambassadors, Antonio de Fonseca, and Juan de Albion,
to him, to ask him not to treat the Pope badly, and not to
seize upon the patrimony of the Church. Had, in addition
to the general obligation laid upon all Christians, special
duties to fulfil towards the Pope, who is their countryman (fn. 12) ,
and included in their alliances.
Must, therefore, declare themselves against the King of
France, and consider themselves released from all obligations
to him. The King of France not only had not restored
anything he had taken from the Pope, but he had not even
deigned to give any answer to their ambassadors, excepting
that he would send an embassy to Spain. The embassy
has never arrived, and the French have behaved as though
nothing had passed between them.
From Rome the King of France went to Naples. He had
repeatedly promised, and even publicly proclaimed, that he
would not touch the property of the Queen of Naples, the
sister of Ferdinand. Nevertheless the first property he confiscated
belonged to the said Queen, and her towns and
villages were laid waste on his march.
As soon as the French entered Naples they proclaimed
their intention of conquering Sicily also, pretending that there
was no difference between Naples and Sicily. For this purpose
the King of France had published complaints against them,
and proclaimed his enmity against all Spaniards, who were
"ill treated and murdered and robbed, wherever they were
found." Yet they had borne all, and kept quiet.
But seeing that the King of France did not make any
reparation to the Pope, and behaved as has been described,
they entered into a league with the Pope, the King of the
Romans, and the Dukes of Venice and Milan, without prejudice
to any one, and only for the conservation of the patrimony
of the Church (which they would have been obliged to
defend, even if they had not concluded the league) and of
their own states. They, moreover, fixed a time during which
all who wished it might become members of the league,
and the King of France might enter it without meeting with
any opposition, unless his intentions were inimical.
on the Pope.
The King of France had made bad worse when he left
Naples and returned to Rome. The Pope had requested him
not to enter Rome, being afraid that he would do great harm
in the city, and that he would keep his promises no better
than he had done before. He, moreover, offered him a free
passage through his states, together with provisions. But
the King of France would enter Rome ; and the Pope, in
order to avoid danger, fled, and with him the whole College of
Cardinals. Such an outrage against the viceregent of God had
never before been committed by Christians, or such slaughter,
murder, and robbery as had been perpetrated by the French
in Rome, especially against the Spaniards, "who were dead
as soon as they were seen." The Pope had asked and is continually
asking help from Spain. This is the present state
of things. They are released from all obligations towards
the King of France because he has not fulfilled his duties.
This memoir is sent in order that the King of England may
be aware of all that has happened ; that he may excuse them
for their dealings with the King of France ; also that he
may take example, learn what the acts of the King of France
are, and see what it will be convenient for him to do.
Indorsed : "A copy of this memoir was sent to Doctor De
Puebla by Juan de Santa Gadea, messenger, who
left Burgos on the 20th of July 1495."
Spanish. pp. 8.
Arch. de l'Empire.
101. A Short Relation of all that happened between the
King and the Queen Of Spain and the King Of
France, with respect to the restoration of the counties
of Roussillon and Cerdaña, and the occurrences
which afterwards happened in Italy.
The pledge of Roussillon and Cerdaña, had been declared by
King Louis himself to be null and void. Nevertheless, King
Charles had refused to restore them.
When, however, the English invaded France and besieged
Boulogne, King Charles solemnly swore to restore the said
counties to Ferdinand and Isabella. But as soon as the
danger was over, he did not fulfil his obligation.
When the King of the Romans threatened France with an
invasion, King Charles again swore to restore Roussillon and
Cerdaña by the month of February 1493 ; and again he
broke his promise.
At last the King of France, pressed on all sides (convenido
de todas partes), made the restitution, but in such a way that
it was clear from the first that he intended to reconquer the
counties as soon as he had finished his Italian enterprise.
[The continuation of this memoir is identical with that of
the 20th July 1495.]
Indorsed : "Draft of what passed between the King and
Queen, our Lords, and the King of France."
Spanish. Draft. pp. 11.