Spain: August 1554, 1-15

Pages 13-30

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 13, 1554-1558. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1954.

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August 1554, 1–15

12. The Emperor to Philip
The Camp 2 August Whenever any one has left here for England, we have sent you news of the war, so you will have heard that we have left Namur and proceeded to this place. All we need tell you now is that we have increased our forces and advanced a little towards Cambray with a view to attacking the King of France's camp, as we had determined to do; but news are now coming in from various parts that he has raised his camp, and though we are not certain which way he is moving, it seems he is retreating in the direction of St. Quentin, presumably to disband his army, or most of it. We will let you know what we decide to have done with ours; but the effort we have made to drive him out of our dominions has cost this country dear, the season is far advanced, the rains coming on and the country so exhausted as to be unable to support a great army this year. Moreover, were you to leave England and come hither, as we recently wrote you in the light of events as they were then, it ought to be at a time when you might gain reputation in the eyes of England and all the world. On the whole, therefore, we think you had better stay where you are and be with the Queen, my daughter, busying yourself with the government of England, settling affairs there and making yourself familiar with the people, which it is most important you should do for present and future considerations. So we pray you to stay, for thereby you will give us pleasure, and there is no reason to fear that by so doing you will suffer any loss of reputation, for the situation is entirely different from the one that moved me to send for you, and had it not changed I would not urge you to remain in England, where your presence is greatly needed. I trust that if the war lasts much longer there will be some good opportunity for striking, with God's help, a great blow at the enemy in your presence, as I am sure you would be glad to be here at such a time.
Decipher. Spanish.
Simancas, E.508.
13. The Emperor to his Ambassadors in England
The Camp near Bouchain, 2 August We are anxiously awaiting news from England telling us how everything went off; we suppose the despatch must reach us soon, and that you took care to send it off promptly. This letter is to inform you that Cardinal Pole, the Legate, has sent to the Bishop of Arras (fn. 1) one of his servants whom he had sent to Rome and who has just returned thence. This man declared to the bishop, who was to pass his words on to us, that the Pope (fn. 2) considered no time to be more suitable for reforming religious affairs in England than the moment when our son, the King, had just arrived there; and it was urgent to be as quick about it as possible in order to avoid the perdition of the souls of all those who were dying in the meantime. The Pope therefore charged the Cardinal to proceed to England as Legate, and induce us to give our consent, for he already had full powers and his Holiness was willing to leave the conduct of his mission to his discretion, having great confidence in the Cardinal's virtues and understanding of English affairs. The Cardinal, his servant pursued, in order to make his visit to us welcome and the more easily to persuade us, was bringing us a brief congratulating us on our son's arrival and the consummation of the marriage, for news of his preparations for the journey received in Italy gave reason to believe that he would already be there. Moreover, his Holiness had wished to honour our son by altering the Cardinal's legatine commission and. addressing it to the King and Queen instead of to the Queen alone, also adding a recommendation to the Cardinal to strive by all means to please the royal couple.
The Bishop of Arras, as if of his own accord, observed to the Cardinal's man that it seemed remarkably early to execute the commission, when our son had only just arrived and it was as yet uncertain how matters were going to shape. It might be prudent to examine the Cardinal's powers and find out how he intended to handle the negotiation; thus one might make sure that his projected course of action was likely to succeed, but the Cardinal must be aware how great a part money-matters played in a country like England, where it was known of old that they often caused trouble. To this the man replied that it would be impossible to set about God's business too soon. There were several things needing a remedy in England, and the Cardinal's mere presence would make all the difference; for instance, it would relieve bishops and others of their qualms of conscience for having possessed their benefices without having a legitimate claim to them. The Cardinal well understood how to use moderation where Church property was concerned; but care must be taken not to set a bad example to the rest of Christendom, or certain catholics who had laid hands on ecclesiastical belongings might invoke this precedent to keep them; and as for leaving all Church property in the possession of the actual holders, that would make it look as if the apostolic see were buying back its authority in England with money. The Bishop of Arras made no reply, in order not to enter into a discussion on his own responsibility, but undertook to report this declaration to us and afterwards to make known our reply, the purport of which was that our son had only just arrived in England, and that so far everyone had been too busy with the marriage celebrations to be able to judge how things were likely to go. We therefore thought it would be better to wait and see, though in the meantime we would inform the King and Queen of the Cardinal's message and ascertain from them how far it would be possible to proceed at present.
The Cardinal must realise that we were all three of us animated by the greatest zeal for the cause of religion, but it was necessary to act with extreme prudence in order not to be led by good intentions into forcing upon the nation a measure which would prove odious, and might only increase the trouble and disorder instead of remedying it.
We take it that the Cardinal is sincerely moved by his ardour for religion, but are quite unable to feel the same confidence in all the persons who surround him and are continually at his ear trying to persuade him to do this and that for reasons of their own, which are not all good reasons. We know the Cardinal has no commission to press onward so hotly, but have been privately informed by a letter written by his Holiness's own hand that the spirit of his instructions is to act in all things in conformity with our opinion and to be guided by us, for he feels confident that we will make the best of all opportunities.
You will explain all this carefully to the King and Queen, so that they may make up their minds as to how much the present state of opinion will stand. The object in view is always to restore religion, but in such a manner as not to risk provoking a contrary result. Until a reply from you comes we will keep the Legate waiting and not allow him to proceed on his journey towards England.
Signed: Charles; countersigned: Bave. French.
Besançon, C. G.73.
Printed by Weiss, Documents Inédits, Vol. IV. The original minute is in Vienna (Staatsarchiv, E. 23).
14. The Princess Regent of Spain to the Emperor (Extract)
Valladolid, 3 August I received your Majesty's letter of June 29th; but as the Prince, my brother, had sailed when it reached me, Juan Vázquez (fn. 3) who was on the Corunna road sent me a copy of the letter for his Highness, and told me that he had sent on the original to Corunna in the hope of still finding there Don Luis de Carvajal, who had stayed behind with a few ships to pick up some soldiers, or if not to have it despatched in a small vessel. It now appears that no vessel was found to take it, so it has come back here, and Juan Vazquez says he is sending it off again by a courier who is taking letters from the Queen of England's agent here, though he feels sure his Highness will have received the duplicates. I thought it well to seize the opportunity of telling your Majesty that I had received the letter addressed to me, and seen from it and the one meant for the Prince your account of the present state of affairs in the Low Countries. I am exceedingly sorry that your Majesty should have all this trouble now, but very glad that you are well enough to take the field. I thank Our Lord for that, and beg Him to keep you in health. I am sure you would greatly have desired to put off the Prince's coming, but as his presence in the Low Countries is so necessary he will of course go, though the Queen, my sister, will certainly be sorry to lose him after so short a time. However, every other consideration must be posponed to the chief cause . . . . .
Minute. Spanish.
Simancas, E.103.
15. The Princess Regent of Spain to Mary I
Valladolid, 3 August I have received your Highness's letter of June 12th, presented to me by your agent, Thomas Gresham. In it you speak of a sum of money to be paid over to you in Spain, and of leave to export it in conformity with a letter from the Emperor. This is the first time you have asked anything of me, and I would very much have liked to grant your request without reservation, but I hear that when your ambassadors mentioned the matter to his Highness at Corunna he gave them permission to export 200,000 ducats, (fn. 4) and had great difficulty even so, for the representatives (i.e. in Cortes) of these kingdoms have implored me to forbid all exportation of coin, because of its great scarcity here. I therefore beg your Highness to excuse me for not sending you the rest, for God knows I would have liked to please you and despatch the whole amount; but it was impossible for the above reasons. I shall write again to your Highness to congratulate you on your marriage and assure you of my desire to serve you, so I will only say here that your agent shall receive all possible favour, according to your wish.
Minute. Spanish.
Simancas, E.104.
16. Juan Vázquez de Molina to Philip (Extract)
Valladolid, 3 August I wrote to your Majesty from Sarria on July 17th, and sent his Imperial Majesty's despatch to Corunna, but the courier found Don Luis de Carvajal gone, and no boat to take the packet. So he came back here, and I am now sending the despatch and other letters with a messenger from the agent who resides here for the Queen of England, though I expect your Majesty already has all the news, as Juan López de Vivero writes to me that you arrived with your fleet at Southampton in three days and nineteen hours. We thank God for this, and trust your voyage was favourable and that you arrived in good health, for in spite of the above report we shall not be satisfied until we get letters from your Majesty, and they are being anxiously looked for, as we are longing to know how the wedding went off and what decision you have come to as to your journey to Flanders, as well as what more has come to pass there . . . . .
Decipher. Spanish.
Simancas, E.103.
17. The Emperor to Philip
The Camp, 4 August My son: I have received your earlier autograph letter, and also a copy of it; have the one brought by Count Horn, (fn. 5) whom I was very glad to see because of the minute account he was able to give me of your and the Queen's health, how your marriage went off and the general condition of affairs in England. I was greatly pleased at what he told me, and trust in God that the situation over there may go on improving, and above all that He may grant you an heir, putting my faith in Him, as I have been moved in this matter by the most righteous aims. I am sure you are doing your best to make the Queen happy, showing her all the love and devotion she deserves. Count Horn has told me and others have written that you are doing so most conscientiously, and I beg you to continue. I am sending Humbermont to visit both of you on my behalf and tell you what is contained in his instructions, report to you on the state of my health and the latest news from the King of France's camp. So I will say no more now, except that I think it well to keep Count Horn over here for the present, and will write again to deal with any points that may come up.
Decipher. Spanish.
Simancas, E.508.
17A. The Emperor to Count d'Egmont
The Camp near Cambrai, 4 August My cousin: As you have wholly executed the commission given to you in your instructions, and my son's marriage has been celebrated and consummated, I will defer to your request to be allowed to return to me. So with the King's and Queen's consent, and unless they have need of you over there, you may at once repair hither.
Minute. French.
Vienna, Staatsarchiv, E.23.
18. The Emperor to his Ambassadors in England
The camp near Cambrai, 4 August We had long ago intended to send M. de Humbermont, a gentleman of our chamber and bearer of this letter, to visit the King and Queen and congratulate them on their marriage; but as things have happened of which you will already have heard and will obtain a more detailed account from M. de Humbermont, we decided to defer his departure until we should see what was going to come next and should thus be better able to decide what message we must send to the King, our son. We were also unwilling to do M. de Humbermont the injustice of sending him off while we were so near the enemy and as yet uncertain of the upshot; and now he will be able to give you an eye-witness's account of all that has occurred.
You gave us great pleasure by fully informing us of the King our son's arrival and doings in England down to the celebration of the marriage, together with the ceremonies performed, the Queen's happiness and the general satisfaction felt in England with the bridegroom's bearing. We pray God of His grace to permit our son so to continue that this marriage may fail of none of the results we hope will accrue from it to the prosperity, repose and security of both realms and their inhabitants.
You now request to be recalled, saying that your commission has expired now that the King is in England and married; and by the time this letter reaches you he and the Queen will probably be in London and all his suite lodged. Moreover, you plead, those who surround him now know how they must bear themselves in order to please the English, towards whom it is advisable to behave in a deferent manner at this early stage. In answer to this request, it seems to me that you, M. de Courrieres, may return with the King's and Queen's leave, unless they require your services for some time longer, in which case we desire you to comply. You, however, Lieutenant of Amont, have derived considerable knowledge of affairs and persons from your long residence and incessant activity in England; and you must continue to reside there for a time in order to give our son and his advisers the benefit of your experience and assist the Spaniards and Englishmen to carry on affairs together in perfect confidence. M. de Humbermont will expose to you the instructions with which we have sent him to England, and we charge you to grant him all possible favour and help in the execution of his commission.
Minute. French.
Vienna, Staatsarchiv, E.23.
19. Instructions from the Emperor to M. de Humbermont
The Camp, 4 August As soon as you have arrived in England, you will present my letters to the King and Queen, my son and daughter, and thank them for having sent Count Horn to visit me, for I was very glad to hear that they were well and their marriage had been successfully celebrated. They may feel sure that I would very much have liked to be present in person, in order to sec and speak with them, and that we might have rejoiced together over this most happy event that has crowned my persistent efforts, for which I never tire of rendering thanks to Our Lord.
I trust in Him, that as He has brought it about, He will cause the newly-married couple to live on in happiness and speedily bring them the issue that would make our joy complete. You will tell them that I have not sent any one to visit them before this because I had heard that they meant to send a special envoy to me, and I wished to see the King's letter. You will inform them of all that has occurred here, taking the greatest pains, as I enjoined upon you verbally, to convey to the Queen a sense of my attachment, giving them also an account of my health, which ought to be better considering the task I am now engaged upon; but I must make a great effort until I see what the upshot of this campaign will be.
You will say to the King, my son, that he has doubtless seen from the letter I sent off yesterday the decision I have arrived at as to his coming hither, and that the longer I reflect on the matter the more I am convinced that for the present he had better reside with the Queen, busy himself with the government of the realm and gain the goodwill not only of the nobles but also of the people, for by so doing a great deal may be achieved in the future.
After Count Horn had arrived here yesterday and reported to me, I called the Council together in his presence, in order that he might be thoroughly well-informed, and went over the possibilities of a campaign this year. The expediency of invading France was discussed, with the object of doing there as much harm as the French have visited upon our dominions, and of seizing some fortress or place that might easily be fortified. Another suggestion was to besiege Marienbourg and cut off its communications, or at any rate prevent the French from advancing further in that direction, which is a particularly dangerous one because Namur is not far off, a place of great importance. However, the season is far advanced, Marienbourg is very strong and well-provided with men, munitions and supplies, so a siege would be one of those costly and unremunerative operations which are better avoided. All these questions were discussed, but no decision could we arrive at because all must necessarily depend on the movements of the enemy, about which we as yet have no certain information, and the size of his army. In good time we shall fix on a plan, of which the King shall be informed; and for the present we are leaving for Cambrai, in which direction the camp is already moving. If the opportunity seems favourable, we may advance and try to injure the enemy in order to put heart into our troops and perhaps strike a blow, or at any rate take our army out of our dominions which have suffered so sorely, and feed it on the French country as long as we intend to keep it together. Last of all, the Council was informed of the request the King had addressed to us, both when he heard of the loss of Marienbourg and again recently, to come to take part in the war; but it was unanimously agreed that he by no means ought to leave England, but stay there and try to set affairs in that realm in order, leaving his journey hither for a more promising time, since there seems to be no chance at present of achieving any important success, and if he simply came in for the latter part of an inglorious campaign, far from shedding lustre on him, it would be much more likely, for various reasons, to diminish his prestige. It is most essential that in his first campaign he should make a fine appearance before the world. What he had better do now is to see to sending over the Spanish troops and money, as he tells me he is doing, and I have ordered Captain Juan Navarro to conduct them hither under strict discipline so that they may do no harm. I was already inclined to take this view (i.e. that Philip had better stay in England), as I wrote, but now I hold it most emphatically, so you will once more beg the King to comply with my wishes, for I see no other course more advantageous to him, and if there were any danger of his losing reputation by remaining where he is I would not try to persuade him to do so.
I had decided that Count Horn was to return to England with you in order to give a more detailed account of all the above to the King, as he was present at the meeting of the Council and realises that there is no hope of achieving any marked success this season; but I have since thought it better to defer his departure until I have an answer from the King, and that it will be enough for you to make the report to him and recite the contents of these instructions. You will tell him that although he writes to me that he has said nothing about coming hither to the Queen, it was well to send the letters I wrote, and he may order you to speak to her on the subject, as there is reason why you should ask her, on my behalf, to excuse him, and why she should thank me for stopping him from coming hither, though he was so anxious to do so.
You will also tell the King that as soon as the accounts of the money reach me I will answer his autograph letter and deal with the points contained therein. And when you have carried out your mission, you may return, bringing me the good news of the King and Queen I trust in Our Lord to hear.
Copy or translation. Spanish.
Simancas, E.508.
20. The Queen Dowager to the Bishop of Arras. (Extract from a letter concerned with the progress of the war against France.)
Valenciennes, 4 August . . . . . Count Horn has said that my nephew, the King of England, thinks the Estates of the Low Countries ought to have sent over their deputies to congratulate him on his arrival. But you know how these countries are constituted, and that the Estates may not meet without being summoned by his Imperial Majesty. Thus each state remains separate and manages its own affairs apart, and it would have been exceedingly difficult for them to combine in sending such a deputation. I wish to point this out to you, so that when occasion offers the King may be informed that this omission is not to be put down to any lack of dutiful affection on the part of the Estates, but is to be explained by the above considerations . . . . .
Minute. French.
Brussels, E. A.126.
21. Count de Beveren and Cornille Scepperus to the Queen Dowager
Veere, 4 August Madam: We have been waiting here for M. de Wacken, but have had wherefore we take it that the King of England has ordered him to remain off that coast, and we suppose your Majesty will have been more fully informed. Private travellers from England know nothing except that it is said there that the King still means to protect the Channel with thirtysix men-of-war: twelve of them English, twelve Biscayan and twelve Flemish; but we are by no means certain of this and should be greatly surprised were it true, for there is no French fleet at sea to warrant such it heavy expense, and the six or eight corsairs that are out are not strong enough to accomplish anything.
It is said here that dissension is rife in Scotland, where the men of the Orcades and Hebrides have rebelled against the body of the kingdom, in consequence of which the Queen Dowager and her Council have sent a strong force of troops to punish the islanders; and news of their success are being expected.
The west-bound ships are diligently being made ready to sail, and will be so by the 20th or 25th of this month.
We have no other naval news, except that the Dutch and Flemish fishing smacks have gone out well-armed and prepared, most of them, and convoyed by men-of-war.
Written in Scepperus's hand. Signed by both. French.
Brussels; E. A.109.
Apostil, in the writing of Viglius dc Zwichcm (fn. 6) : Let them be answered that her Majesty thanks them for their news and supposes they will by now have heard about the Spaniards who were to have landed, for her Majesty recently wrote about this to M. de Beveren. Her Majesty desires them to send on any other tidings they may receive.
22. The Emperor to Don Alonso Pajón
The Camp, 5 August Orders Don Alonso Pajon to hand over the Spanish infantry, which has been brought from Spain by the King of England and Naples, to Captain Juan Navarro, who has received instructions to conduct the troops with all possible despatch to camp, and to tolerate no breach of discipline to the prejudice of the country people, of which instructions the officers and non-commissioned officers are to be informed.
Signed: Yo El Rey; countersigned: Francisco de Eraso. Spanish.
Simancas, E.508.
23. The Bishop of Arras to Simon Renard
The Camp near Cambrai, 5 August I omitted to say in my last letter that the Emperor has heard that the King has been influenced by certain persons to be resentful because the man of the Low Countries sent no ambassadors to assist at the solemnisation of his marriage and congratulate him on his arrival in England. You will take some favourable opportunity to explain to the King that the Low Countries have never been in the habit of sending ambassadors to any court except by the express order of their prince, to whom they always leave the initiative; and his Majesty thought it unnecessary in this case, as the condition of affairs made it advisable, even from the point of view of the King's interests, that every thought should be given to the protection of these countries against the enemy. Moreover, they are so exhausted as to be unable to do more than furnish the contributions indispensable for their own defence; and as to send ambassadors without presents would be to give a wrong impression of the loyal feelings of subjects, it was better not to attempt a mission more suitable to times of peace than to a troublous season like the present. I am sorry that Count Horn should have mentioned the King's resentment, as the people here may be hurt about it; and I feel sure that when his Royal Majesty has been fully informed he will not harbour the resentment about which certain persons have had so much to say. You will see what the Queen has written to me by the enclosed copy, (fn. 7) and you will act in this matter as you think most prudent.
Signed. French. Slightly torn.
Besançon, C. G.73.
Printed by Gachard, Voyages des Souverains des Pays-Bas, Appendix to Vol. IV.
24. The Ambassadors in England to the Emperor
Windsor, 5 August Sire: Our letters from Winchester will have informed your Majesty that the reason why you did not receive from us the first news of the consummation of the marriage of the King and Queen and the attendant ceremonies was that M. de Horn's departure was delayed, which we trust your Majesty will take in good part, as it was decided by his Highness. Since our last letters were written, we have received M. d'Arras's to the Lieutenant of Amont, giving us the substance of what has occurred over there, which we read and handed over to his Highness, who was most anxious to hear how affairs were progressing. He was very glad to learn, by your Majesty's letter of the 3rd instant, which we read to him, that the French were retreating from Crèvecceur.
We have also submitted to the King and Queen the point concerning which Cardinal Pole's man spoke to M. d'Arras. The present moment is a somewhat critical one for such a mission, and it seems inadvisable to hasten it on, especially as we have no exact knowledge of the Cardinal's commission. Public and private affairs here are not in as settled a condition as they ought to be, and the question of the Pope's authority is a much more thorny one than the re-establishment of the true and straightforward observance of religion. The Cardinal has advisers, and perhaps carries on correspondence with people here which we know nothing about. The English are still unsettled and divided in their minds; and for a number of reasons that promptly occurred to their Highnesses, they and we agreed that the Cardinal's journey had better be put off, and that the execution of his commission must depend upon the decision arrived at by Parliament during the next session, and by no means be attempted merely in virtue of the instructions he had received, which were they to be followed might end by damaging his Highness's prospects and endangering his person. The object in view is not to give up the mission as hopeless, but to make the Pope and Legate see that the present juncture will not permit it. At the same time, every effort shall be made to prove to the Pope, the Consistory and all Christendom that their Highness's foremost and greatest desire is to lead England back to a dutiful attitude, thoroughly re-establish religion and once more set up the service of God. The Queen wishes us to discuss the matter with the Chancellor, the Bishop of Ely and Secretary Petre, which we shall do to-morrow, when the ceremonies of the Order of the Garter are over. These solemnities have taken place to-day; and his Highness presided as sovereign, for he had taken the habit last Friday, the day he arrived here, when he went into the chapel before proceeding to his own quarters. He bore himself most graciously, and the people were well pleased. It is true that there is still the split in the Council, whose members deal underhandedly with one another; and it may be productive of grave trouble in the future unless some remedy is provided. Various suggestions are being discussed, and if necessary his Highness's authority may be invoked. We hope to talk all this over with the Council to-morrow, and devise means to restore order and forestall further dissention.
We had thought that their Highnesses would depart next Wednesday for Richmond and reach London on Thursday, but the Queen has been suffering from a cold, so the journey has been put off until Friday.
Cardinal Pole has written letters of which we are sending an abstract to your Majesty, together with the copy (fn. 8) of one which he wanted to send to the Constable of France (fn. 9) and we have shown to his Highness. We shall await the intimation of your Majesty's pleasure, but do not suppose you will consider the motives adduced in the Cardinal's letters to be a good reason for allowing his missive to the Constable to be sent on.
We are also sending an account of Wyndham's voyage, and of the ships that took part in it.
We are credibly informed that the Queen of France left Rheims on the 28th of last month for Compiegne, where she will await the King. There is shortage of money. The King has hastily sent masons and pioneers to finish the fortifications of Marienbourg. Also, the King has passed sentence on those who behaved in a cowardly manner at the attack on Dinant, some of them being condemned to death, others to an infamous punishment, and the nobles to the loss of their privileges; and on this occasion he sat sceptre in hand like a pontiff. He is incensed about the packets taken from the coffers belonging to MM. de Châtillon and their brother, the Cardinal.
Signed by both, and the last paragraph in Renard's hand. French.
Vienna, Staatsarchiv, E.22.
Printed by Weiss from a minute at Besançon (C.G. 73), Documents Inédits, Vol. IV.
25. The Emperor to Mary I
Brussels, 8 August Mr. Mason, (fn. 10) who has long resided as your ambassador in our Court, is about to return to England; and I do not wish to let him go without giving him this letter to bear witness that not only has he done his duty in your service with great prudence and modesty, but we are well pleased with his manner of transacting all the business that has passed through his hands. A better servant it would be impossible to ask for, and he has constantly shown his devotion to you. Wherefore, over and above the foregoing attestation, I cannot omit to pray you most heartily to show him the gratitude he so well deserves, and single him out for favour for our sake.
Minute. French.
Vienna, Staatsarchiv, E.23.
26. The Ambassadors in England to the Emperor
Windsor, 8 August Sire: We have talked over with the Chancellor and the Bishop of Ely Cardinal Pole's demand to come over here at once as Papal Legate and set about the execution of his commission to establish once more the authority of the holy see, and put an end to religious disputes. After hearing the reply that your Majesty caused the Bishop of Arras to make, the Chancellor expressed the opinion that the Cardinal might come shortly, when the hot weather was over and there was less danger; say towards the end of September. His view is that the Cardinal, as a well-connected Englishman and honoured by many, would be more respected than another, and might be represented as coming to take possession of the archbishopric of Canterbury, to which he has been appointed, to congratulate their Highnesses on their marriage, or to take up the thread of his former endeavour to get the Queen to intervene in the cause of peace. Neither the Council nor Parliament, he thinks, ought to be allowed to dictate in this matter, for they would never consent to his coming at all; but means must be found, partly by the use of authority and partly by dexterity, to open the doors of the kingdom to him as Legate, and not as a prince. It is already known, he asserts, that the Queen created the last bishops by the Pope's power, obtained a dispensation for the marriage and went to the Pope for advice on several points that troubled her conscience; and though Paget, (fn. 11) who found this out at the time when he was in favour, made it known, there were no regrettable consequences. However, the Cardinal must come with ample powers to confirm the possessors of church property in their tenure, and with no thought whatever of recovering it for the Church.
Their Highnesses were informed of the Chancellor's views, but the King still disapproves, for the reasons stated in our last letter, of hastening on the Cardinal's coming. He does not think that it would be possible to explain it away in such a manner as to prevent the heretics from finding out the real reason; and it was decided that we should write to your Majesty that the Cardinal had better be persuaded to be patient for a little longer until we see how matters are going to turn out here. Above all, before coming to England he must clear up this business of the tenure of holders of Church-property in such a manner that the present possessors may be convinced that they will not be disturbed; for otherwise we shall never achieve the desired result. The Cardinal must realise that the only object aimed at here is to enable him successfully to execute his commission, and unless he takes this advice he will run great risks himself and render the whole religious question much more difficult of settlement, and perhaps even endanger their Highness's persons.
There are three problems to be taken into consideration. The first is the re-establishment of Church authority and religion in general, with which are bound up the intrigues of the French; the second is the open and serious split in the Council, and the third the ill-feeling against the Spaniards fostered among the people. As for the first, only a few days ago, a Kentish priest had his nose cut off and suffered various indignities. It is already being said that the Pope is coming back, the monasteries to be rebuilt, Church-property taken away from its present holders; that the priests are going to take their revenge, abuses are not going to be corrected, the King has brought over Franciscans and other monks to make a beginning; whilst the people stick to it that they will not consent unless they are reassured, and such remarks are now their every-day commonplaces.
With regard to the second point, the disorder among the Councillors has reached such a point that some of them follow the Chancellor and the rest the Earl of Arundel, who has gone off with Pembroke, Darcy, Cobham and several others to Paget's house four or five miles hence; behaviour which is not to be interpreted otherwise than as a sign of evil intentions, for when Englishmen have a conspiracy on foot these meetings always take place. Paget is taken to be the author and abettor of all evil plans, and he has been the more ready to plot since he has seen that the Queen is indignant with him, that he no longer counts and, whilst he despairs of ever receiving his expected reward for all the trouble he took to bring about the marriage, others who did not work nearly as hard as he are reaping where he sowed. All this he let out to a friend of mine, who told me; and the thing that rankles most with him is that the very men who tried to prevent the match are now in the highest favour; besides which he hates the Chancellor, High Treasurer, Chamberlain and other of the Queen's old servants for private reasons of his own. Arundel aims at marrying Elizabeth to his son, and preventing the Chancellor and High Treasurer from governing. We foresee that the first difficulty will arise over the general pardon which Arundel and his supporters wish the King to grant in order that Elizabeth and more of their friends may be set at liberty; and this is so dangerous a matter that we know not how to handle it.
In connexion with the third point, we hear it will be very hard to induce the Londoners to lodge the Spaniards, and some of the English are leaving no stone unturned to enrage the people against them, and have already provoked some skirmishes; but the Spaniards are long-suffering enough to put up with almost intolerable treatment. However, several lords' servants are already murmuring against them, calling them “knavish Spaniards” (kneves espaignars): words likely to breed violence; and others say that only wretched, naked people have been brought over here. It is being rumoured that at Portsmouth, Southampton and Winchester there are 3,000 or 10,000 Spaniards come to conquer the realm; and a few days ago it was said that an Englishman had gone off to Lord Derby's (fn. 12) force, 500 in number, to report that Derby's son (fn. 13) had killed two of the chief Spaniards who came over with the King, and that other Spaniards had wounded him and the Earl of Huntingdon's son. (fn. 14) The object of this was to cause them to revolt, and there are several people about the same business. These matters are deserving of attention, as evil will come of them unless God remedies it; and they show that the Cardinal's journey must not be hastened for fear of making things worse.
We greatly dread that Arundel and Paget may be plotting in France in order to further their designs; for they are unlikely to forget anything that might be turned to account in this distracted season. The Duke of Savoy has been elected a Knight of the Order of the Garter.
Signed by both. French.
Vienna, Staatsarchiv, E.21.
27. The Bishop of Arras to Simon Renard
The Camp near Lillers, 9 August Your letters for the Emperor, in reply to what he wrote to M. de Courrières and yourself about my conference with Cardinal Pole's man, came yesterday, and I am waiting for his orders with regard to them. M. de Humbermont will have given you fresher news by now and handed over the letters his Majesty wrote to you both. Since then, the Emperor has had news that the King of France is moving his camp towards Renty, and has advanced his own forces with the object of taking the pressure off Renty, though the place is not really strong enough to hold out. To-night the enemy's camp is about two leagues away, though some patrols have come up to the walls; and to-morrow's news will tell his Majesty what further steps he must take. The Duke of Savoy is reporting to the King, our Prince, on some plan the Constable is said to be harbouring against Calais, of which he has also warned the Deputy, and I am writing these few lines to forward his letter.
Holograph. French.
Besançon, C. G.7.
Printed by Weiss, Documents Inédits, Vol. IV.
28. M. de Courrieres to the Emperor
Windsor, 11 August Sire: It is beyond me to refrain from writing of what I see in the King; and I swear to your Majesty that he bears himself in this realm with a graciousness passing all power of description, and wins over the hearts of nobles and commons alike. It is evident to me that everyone loves him; and people have come hither to see him from London and Bristol, and have returned again full of a joy that I cannot attempt to portray to your Majesty. As for the happiness of the royal couple, I believe it will never grow less, and on the faith I owe to God and your Majesty it is a great pleasure to see them together.
For the rest, Sire, I only wish your Majesty could see the King, for he is altogether changed from what he was when he last left the Low Countries. In short, he is making all hearts his with his gracious ways, and most of the people here are ashamed of having listened to so much evil talk about him. Your Majesty will pardon my boldness.
Holograph. French.
Vienna, Staatsarchiv, E.22.
Enclosed in the above letter.
“A memoir of Mr. Wyndham's voyage, who left England on August 20, 1554.” (fn. 15) He started with three ships; two belonging to the Queen, and one to Wyndham.
Mr. Barnes, Mr. Garrett, Mr. York and Mr. Lambert had fitted out the ships. They sailed straight to Guinea, and touched land at a place called Cape Three Points (Tres Puntas) and at the Mine Castle (Castillo de la Mina), where they bartered a part of their cargo for gold. Next, they proceeded some seventy leagues further, and had speech of the King of Benin, a negro, with whom they struck a bargain by which he was to fill their holds with pepper, in exchange for which they were giving him goods; and he promised to execute his part of the agreement on a fixed day. The King, however, did not keep his word; and in the meantime the heat kept increasing and sickness so raged among them that Wyndham and sixty-six others died, among them being a Portuguese captain called Pinteado, (fn. 16) who was on board as pilot. Thus they set sail again, but as there were not enough men left to work the three ships they sank the one that belonged to Wyndham and returned home with the other two, one of which reached Plymouth with, as they say, 200 pounds weight of fine gold and 30 to 40 bags of pepper aboard. The other made the port of Corunna, but they say she is empty. As soon as the merchants heard that the ship had arrived at Plymouth, they went thither to take over the gold and pepper.
29. The Bishop of Arras to Simon Renard
The Camp (near Renty) 12 August I am sending off this courier in the hope that he may come up with a gentleman of the Duke of Florence who is carrying to the King, our Prince, news of Peter Strozzi's defeat, and that the same gentleman may carry to you the enclosed (fn. 17) from the Duke of Savoy, which he tells me is a report to the King on what is happening at camp; so I pray you to deliver it promptly. I will take the opportunity of informing you that Villey has just arrived with yours of the 8th, which his Majesty has read and is sending on to the Queen. He has also given me the one you wrote to me, the contents of which show that you and I are of one opinion, namely that we do not care who manages affairs, nor desire to take a share in their conduct, provided they are carried on in the manner required by our master's interests. Still, as we have been entrusted with this labour, we must do our duty to the end, and I am sure you will continue to fulfil yours over there, as his Majesty has decided that you shall stay some time longer.
As for your affection for me, I am sure of it, as you may be of mine for you. I suppose you will hear what the Duke is writing to our Prince, but I wish to tell you that the King of France, believing Renty to be weak, has decided to lay siege to it. Now, although in truth the place is in such a condition that it had been decided to dismantle it, we are not without hope that the King may not find his undertaking as easy as he had expected, for he has been there four days with his artillery and our own camp is now so near that unless he makes haste I trust we may force him to raise the siege, for to-day we have taken up a position from which Renty and the French camp are well in view. It seems to me impossible that the two armies, having drawn so near one to another, should separate without bloodshed, and as far as I can see the encounter will take place in the next few days.
Holograph. French.
Besançon, C. G.73.
Printed by Weiss, Documents Inédits, Vol. IV.
30. Ruy Gómez de Silva to Francisco de Eraso (Extracts)
Richmond, 12 August . . . The King is well, and has got over a cold he had a few days ago. He treats the Queen very kindly, and well knows how to pass over the fact that she is no good from the point of view of fleshly sensuality. He makes her so happy that the other day when they were alone she almost talked love-talk to him, and he replied in the same vein. And his way with the English lords is so winning that they themselves say they have never had a king to whom they so quickly grew attached. From what I have seen of them they look flatterers every inch, but I believe what they say because I witness his Highness's behaviour towards them. Let his Majesty not omit to praise his son for it in every letter he writes, and urge him to continue, for the King is certainly a master-hand at it when he cares to try . . . . .
Things are going well here, and though there is some rascality in London, that is no novelty in this country. There is difficulty about the royal apartments, for they are not yet quite ready, and their Highnesses are staying here in the meantime, but I expect they will proceed within three or four days. The Alcalde will write to you about all this, so I will only say that his Highness has seen your letters and was very glad to hear the news you sent me in them. By the way, I showed him what you say in one of them about Hoyos, in order to be able to speak about you and see how he feels about you. I do not think he lacks desire to show you favour and keep you in your honourable position. Do not fail to make up your mind as to what you want, and I will see what can be done for you.
Holograph. Spanish.
Simancas, E.808.
Printed by Fernandez Navarrete, Documentos Inéditos, Vol. III.
31. Mary I to the Emperor
Rcihmond, 13 august Count d' Egmont has laid me under a heavy obligation by the manner in which he has executed his commissions on the two journeys that have brought him hither, first to draw up my marriage articles and contract the betrothal, and then to conduct to this realm him whose presence I desired more than that of any other living being and from whom I have received so much favour and honour. I am therefore unwilling to allow him to depart without giving him these lines to certify that he has most scrupulously obeyed your orders and rendered himself so agreeable to everyone here that it would be ingratitude on my part not to bear witness to it. Were it not for the urgent reason that impels him to return, I should not easily have allowed him to leave this kingdom, where he might still render valuable service to the King, your son and my lord and husband; so I beg you to show him all possible favour. Another letter is being sent to your Majesty by M. de Humbermont, and you will hear ample accounts of affairs here from him and M. d' Egmont, so I will now pray the Creator, of His grace, to help me to please you and my lord and husband, and give you the victory over your enemies.
Holograph. French.
Vienna, Staatsarchiv, E.1.
32. The Queen Dowager to the Bishop of Arras
Brussels 14 August My last answer to your letters was written on the morning of the 12th instant, since when I have received two more from you, one of the evening of the 12th and the other written at eight o'clock yesterday morning, in both of which you gave me detailed accounts of what was happening, between the two armies now facing one another. God grant that the issue be favourable to his Majesty and the welfare of all Christendom. In one of my recent letters I told you to see to it that M. de Berlaymont should not be detained at camp, as I needed him here; but I was then unable to foresee coming events, and in the present state of affairs he certainly ought not to leave his master. It would not be right for me to order him to do so, nor for him to obey me, and you may tell him so when you see him.
Together with your letters, I have received those from our ambassadors in England and Cardinal Pole's power. If disorders are as rife among the people in England as the letters make them out to be, there is reason to fear that our troubles are not over yet, especially if the conspiracy said to be brewing among Paget's followers goes any farther. It seems to me that Paget's complaints uttered to one of his friends are not altogether unreasonable, as he now sees all hope vanish of obtaining his reward for the pains he took to bring about the marriage, of which he was certainly the principal artisan, thereby earning the hatred of the Lady Elizabeth's and Courtenay's supporters and all those devoted to the new religion, as well as of the Catholics. With submission, it seems to me that it would be better to try to mollify him and prevent him from growing still bitterer because of the forgetfulness with which his remarkable services have been paid. His private inclinations may perhaps have caused him to go farther in another direction than he ought; but, as he is the ringleader of the band alluded to in the ambassadors' letters, if he could be won over again his party would be broken up and made harmless, and some or all of its members might abandon their hostile attitude towards the King and Queen of England. I have no doubt that unless some gratitude is shown to him, Paget will bitterly complain to his accomplices of the thanklessness of which he is the victim, and will be able to make out a very clear case; so I think it would be a good thing and an excellent corrective to many of the causes of dissension described in the letters were the King of England, our Prince, by his Majesty's orders, to tell Paget that he is embounden to him for the good offices he performed in connexion with the marriage, for the successful conclusion of which he is largely to be thanked. At the same time he might give him a substantial proof of his favour, promising to do still more for him in the future; and it would be well were his Majesty to exhort him to do this and persuade the Queen to make it up with Paget and employ him, in case he were willing to serve her, and she able to make up her mind to pass over his actions meriting her displeasure, on account of his services at the time of the marriage negotiations and the good work he might still do in the future. I am perhaps being too bold in volunteering this advice; but the ambassadors' letters are full of new disturbances and regrettable incidents, and I fail to see why, in order to put a stop to much of this, an attempt should not be made to come to terms with Paget, for of whatever religion or leanings he may be, there is no denying that he has been too valuable a servant in the past to be turned so lightly away, especially as I remember hearing his Majesty say that he would he very sorry were Paget to allow himself to he seduced, and that he thought this very expedient ought to be tried without delay. (fn. 18) However, I will leave the matter to his Majesty's riper judgment.
I am of the opinion that the King of England has come to a wise decision touching Cardinal Pole's mission, which I do not believe would be at all profitable at present, taking into consideration the state of public opinion over there and also the Cardinal's power which you have sent to me. The impression here is that the clauses dealing with the confirmation of tenure of the holders of Church-property are rather meagre, since whilst his Holiness gives him authority to compose, for such is the term he uses, he reserves the right of being consulted as to cases of great importance, which are not to be decided except according to his good pleasure. I do not feel sure that these clauses would prove acceptable to the Privy Council. I thank you for sending me the papers.
Draft. French.
Brussels, E.A.126.
Printed by Gachard, Voyages des Sotwerains des Pays-Bas, Appendix to Vol. IV.
33. Mary I to the Emperor
Richmond, 15 August The more than paternal letter your Majesty was pleased to write to me by M. de Humbermont brought me at the same time great consolation and joy, and sadness. Joy, because of your affectionate remembrance of me shown by so many visits; melancholy, on account of the anxiety now brought to you by the war. The King, my lord and husband, would have desired to take part of this weight off your shoulders, had it not been for the considerations uttered on your behalf; remarks so prudent and just that they deserve all our attention. In them I see a proof of your Majesty's watchful care for the realm's and my own interests, for which, and above all for having so far spared the person of the King, my husband, I most humbly thank you. I own that you are thereby imposing upon me an obligation so far surpassing all other benefits that I shall never be able to acquit myself; so I will only offer to your Majesty all that my small powers enable me to give, always praying God so to inspire my subjects that they may realise the affection you bear this kingdom, and the honour and advantages you have conferred upon it by this marriage and alliance, which renders me happier than I can say, as I daily discover in the King, my husband and your son, so many virtues and perfections that I constantly pray God to grant me grace to please him and behave in all things as befits one who is so deeply embounden to him. For the rest, I will refer your Majesty to the account M. de Humbermont will give you of the state of affairs here.
Holograph. French.
Vienna, Staatsarchiv, E.l.
34. The Ambassadors in England to Philip
Richmond, Middle of August (fn. 19) Your Majesty has communicated to us writings on two points, upon which you ask our opinion.
First, your Majesty has approached the Pope in order to obtain remission of the excommunications, ecclesiastical censures and declarations of schism pronounced by the apostolic see against this realm and its inhabitants; and about this there is nothing to be said, since the Pope has been informed.
However, we think your Majesty ought to realise that this matter must be kept entirely secret, for to ask for this absolution implies recognition of the Pope's and Consistory's authority, which is far more objectionable to the people here than the mass ever was, as we shall explain hereafter.
The absolution must be general and include the realm and all its inhabitants.
It must be couched in general terms, and not founded on the old claims of the popes to the kingdoms of England and Ireland; nor must it mention the fief or the old tribute.
Let it be seen to that it be not made subject to the clause “while the realm and its inhabitants continue to obey the apostolic see”; for if that condition were inserted the document would be useless.
Were it possible to obtain it of the Pope's spontaneous generosity, without any request having to be made by your Majesty, it would be a point that might come in useful later; and let his Holiness give as his motives “the Christian pity of a Church who never shuts out her children, but is ever indulgent after the example given by the Savior and his Gospel, ever consoling, ever full of forgiveness”, and suchlike reasons.
Let no mention be made of the legate deputed by the Pope and consistory to come over here with authority to grant absolution, receive the realm's obedience, reconsecrate, bless and perform other canonical and ecclesiastical ceremonies; for such allusions would delay the hoped-for result.
As for the legate's coming here, which is the second point in connexion with submission to the papal authority, we cannot advise your Majesty to bring him over at this season and on this errand. We quite realise that it would be an excellent thing for all Christendom if the Church's authority were admitted here, unity among the faithful once more established, and especially that the Anglican Church should cease to be schismatic. This should certainly be the object of all our labours, but it is also necessary to look at the other side of the question, and remember the trouble that might ensue, the danger that might threaten Cardinal Pole and other papal ministers were they to come to England in the present state of the kingdom. Moreover, your Majesty has issued a proclamation about religion, stating that every man shall be free to keep whatever religion he chooses, and a good enough beginning was made when mass was restored, for there are many followers of the new religion who are only awaiting an opportunity to stir up trouble. It is not wise to let the legate come until it is known what may be obtained from the Parliament that is to meet on the 5th of next month, for the French are chiefly concerned in watching for some opening to prevent your Majesty from firmly establishing your rule, and it is not certain that the consistory was not moved to issue the legate's commission by some private consideration and with an evil object in view, for its members take sides for or against princes and frequently confuse earthly and divine policy. The commission deals with the restitution of church property, the restoration of convents and monasteries, a matter that it would be well-nigh impossible successfully to deal with, for most of the people here, especially your Majesty's own councillors, have grown rich on Church revenues. These and other reasons prompt us to counsel your Majesty quietly and by some indirect means to let the Pope know the true state of affairs, and beg him to keep back the legate and bishop whom he had decided to send over here, pointing out to him that it is too early for such a mission. His Holiness ought to realise the dangers that attended your Majesty's accession, how difficult it has been to restore the mass, and how much opposition you then encountered in forcing a point that very nearly caused an outburst and certainly brought about an effervescence that has not yet quieted down. The character of these people is not what might be expected, and his Holiness would do well to reflect that a great deal of odium attaches to such proceedings, and not in England only, but in several other parts of Europe as well. The matter takes time, as it has been impossible to deal with it by means of a General or Provincial Council; but your Majesty will do your best to induce your subjects to share your own sentiments of obedience towards the apostolic see and to fulfil your duty towards his Holiness. During the next session of Parliament it will be possible to ascertain how much can be got out of the country, and your chief care shall be to restore religion to its pristine state. There is reason for being confident that your Majesty's excuses will be taken in good part, and your good will appreciated.
We hear from Rome that this question has been made public, and we think your Majesty had better say nothing about it and make no sign that it has come to your knowledge or that you have taken any steps in the matter. We must remember that if there are going to be any intrigues or commotions about religion during this next session, they will not need this rumour to induce them to show their faces.
Minute. French.
Besançon, C. G.73.
Printed by Weiss, Documents Inédits, Vol. IV; but dated “mid-October”.


  • 1. Antoine Perrenot de Granvelle, the Emperor's minister of state.
  • 2. Julius III (Giovanmaria del Monte).
  • 3. Juan Vázquez de Molina, Philip's secretary in Spain.
  • 4. See Volume XII of this Calendar, p. 304.
  • 5. Philippe de Montmorency, Count Horn.
  • 6. President of the Emperor's Council of State.
  • 7. See the Queen Dowager's letter to the Bishop of Arras, 4 August, 1554.
  • 8. See the letter printed under the date of 24 July in Volume XII of this Calendar, p. 317. No inclosures have been found with this despatch
  • 9. Anne de Montmorency.
  • 10. Sir John Mason. See Volume XII of this Calendar.
  • 11. William, Lord Paget. See Volume XII of this Calendar.
  • 12. Edward Stanley, Earl of Derby.
  • 13. Lord Strange.
  • 14. Henry, Lord Hastings, son of Francis Hastings, Earl of Huntingdon.
  • 15. This date would appear to be a mistake for 1553; see Volume XI of this Calendar, p. 39 and note.
  • 16. See Vol. XI of this Calendar, pp. 14, 38–39, 41.
  • 17. No inclosure has been found with this letter.
  • 18. The passage in italics is crossed out in the original.
  • 19. This paper is undated, but was certainly written before M. de Courrière's departure from England about the end of August, and seems to be referred to by Renard, on August 24. as having been handed in some days before.