Spain: October 1523

Pages 587-591

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 2, 1509-1525. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1866.

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October 1523

1 Oct.
M. B. N. MSS. E. 59. f. 134.
603. The Emperor to Richard Pace, English Ambassador in Venice.
Is fully aware of the valuable services he has rendered him during the negotiations of the treaty of alliance with Venice. Is willing to reward him, and expects he will inform him of the sort of favour which would be most acceptable to him.— Logroño, the 1st of October 1523.
Latin. Register. p. ½.
2 Oct.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist. Muñoz. 56. f. 162.
604. The Emperor to the Duke Of Sessa, his Ambassador in Rome.
This despatch is the answer to his letter of the 28th of July, which is the last he has received from him.
Has been informed, by letters from Milan and Genoa of the 30th and 31st of July, that the Pope has been suffering from fever. Although it is said that the Pope is better, he repeats to him that in case a new election becomes necessary, he is to use all his influence in favour of the Cardinal de Medicis.
The Duke of Milan has entered the league. (fn. 1)
He is to persuade the Pope to convert the defensive league (fn. 1)
into an offensive one. The defensive league is dangerous and expensive, as the allies are forced always to keep their armies in readiness, whilst the King of France has it in his power to attack them only when circumstances are in his favour. If, on the other hand, the Pope converts the defensive league into an offensive one, France can be humbled in a campaign of two months. If the Pope obstinately refuses to conclude an offensive league, he (the Duke of Sessa) must try to win the other Italian states over to such an alliance.
The Pope wishes that he should invade France from the side of Spain. Intends to invade France at the head of his army on or before the 12th of next month. (fn. 2)
Sicily. Cardinal Cesarini, &c.
Intends to establish the Order of St. John either in Ragusa, Malta, or Tripoli. Renzo da Ceri. Church preferment.
As the Cardinal of England and Bernaldino Velasco have already sent their consent to transfer their pensions on the see of Palencia to other churches, he is to see that the bishopric of Palencia be given, free from all pensions, to the Archbishop of Granada.
The King of France has threatened to treat the Pope as Philip le Bel treated Pope Boniface VIII. Begs the Pope not to be afraid of the King of France.
Bull of St. Peter. Modena. Reggio. Pay of the army. Church preferment, &c.
Maintained intelligence with certain people in Bayonne and in another important place ; the surprise on Bayonne, however, failed. That is the reason why he (the Emperor) has not yet invaded France. But as he has published that he will invade France in person, and as the Duke of Bourbon has openly declared himself an enemy of the King of France, it is clear that the enterprise cannot be much delayed.
The French have occupied all the passes, and do not permit any letter to enter Spain. Has, nevertheless, received news from his spies. The English troops, reinforced by his contingent from Flanders, have fought a battle with the French under La Trémouille, routed the French, and taken all men-at-arms prisoners. Monsieur de Bourbon, with a great number of noblemen and a numerous host of followers, together with the 10,000 German troops under Count Felix, (fn. 3) was on his march to Burgundy. The King of France, it is said, has ordered his army, which was on the way to Italy, to return and to march against Monsieur de Bourbon. If that is true, Prospero Colonna must immediately invade Provence, and follow the French army.
The Chancellor is ill.—Logroño, the 2nd of October 1523.
Spanish. Draft. pp. 17.
5 Oct.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist. Salazar. A. 29. ff. 170-174.
605. Lope Hurtado De Mendoza to the Emperor.
Has not seen the Duke of Sessa for some time.
The first thing the cardinals did after the death of the Pope was to set the Cardinal of Volterra at liberty. He said the mass of Spiritus Sanctus, before the cardinals entered into conclave. It is not probable that the Cardinal de Medicis will be elected Pope, but if it should not be De Medicis, it will be another who is a good servant of his (the Emperor). The Duke (of Sessa) does what he can for the Cardinal de Medicis.
Thirty-five cardinals have entered the conclave. It is said that the Cardinal of Ivrea and other cardinals of the French party are coming. De Medicis had 18 votes certain, and would have had 24 if the French had not opposed his election.
Rome is under arms, but no revolt has as yet broken out.
Duke of Ferrara, &c. The French have passed the Ticino without resistance. Detailed news from the theatre of war in Lombardy.
The Cardinal of Ivrea, the Cardinal of Lorraine, and the Cardinal of Auch have disembarked at Piombino. They are expected to arrive in two days in Rome, and will reinforce the French party.—Rome, the 5th of October.
Addressed : "To his Sacred, Catholic, and Imperial Majesty the Emperor, our Lord."
Indorsed : "To the King. 1523. Rome. Lope Hurtado. The 5th of October."
Spanish. Autograph in cipher. Contemporary deciphering. pp. 6.
28 Oct.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist. Salazar. A. 29. ff. 279-293.
606. The Duke Of Sessa, Imperial Ambassador in Rome, to the Emperor.
Has not written to him since the 16th of September, hoping that a new Pope would soon be elected.
The first thing which the cardinals did after the death of the Pope was to ask that the Cardinal of Volterra should be set at liberty. They were almost unanimous on this point, the Cardinal de Medicis and some of his relations being the only opponents. Showed them the motu proprio of the Pope, but they declared that they would not enter the conclave without the Cardinal of Volterra. Consented that the Cardinal should be set at liberty on the day on which the conclave began, as he was told that there was danger of a schism.
Reconciled the Cardinal Colonna with the Cardinal de Medicis. The Cardinal Colonna swore in his presence on a missal to remain a true friend of the Cardinal de Medicis. Soon, however, the Cardinal Colonna broke his oath, and entered into a compact with the Cardinal of Volterra.
Volterra said the mass of Spiritus Sanctus. On the 1st of October the cardinals entered the conclave.
The candidates of the Imperial party are De Medicis, Valle, Campegio, and Farnese. Farnese was almost elected when the conclave began, as he had many votes of the French partisans as well as of the Imperialists. Is told that Farnese is a good Imperialist.
As soon as the conclave began all the passions of the cardinals were let loose. On the 6th the three French cardinals, Auch, Lorraine, and Bourbon, arrived. They embarked at Marseilles on board the galleys of Andrea Doria during a tempest. The cardinals from Genoa have not arrived, although they were asked to come. The Doge Antoniotto says that the captains of the Imperial fleet are in fault, and the captains accuse the Doge. The French cardinals entered the conclave still drenched with sea water.
The conclave is in daily communication with persons in the city. The immuring is only a formality.
Twenty cardinals have formed a confederacy, and sworn not to give their votes to De Medicis, nor to any one of his party. Is sure they will break their oaths, as they agree ill with each other, and all, or at least eight of them, hope to be Pope. The 16 cardinals (the party of De Medicis), although they have not sworn any oath nor made any league, are all to be trusted, and no power on earth will disunite them. They are gaining ground every day. The election may be greatly delayed, but it is to be hoped that a Pope may be elected who will be "a servant of God and of your Majesty, and a benefactor to the whole of Christendom."
Alberto di Carpi arrived without any one knowing of his arrival. He came by the most impracticable roads. The adversaries triumphed at first, because he is openly a French partisan, and he even came as an ambassador of the King of France. But his old friendship with De Medicis is stronger than his party spirit. He has succeeded in disuniting the hostile party, although he is ill in bed with the gout.
The cardinals have refused to pay the second instalment of the contribution towards the expenses of the army of the league. Colonna has rendered him (the Emperor) very bad services.
The Duke of Ferrara keeps quiet since the death of the Pope. News concerning the army. The war in Lombardy.
The news from Lombardy keeps the election of the Pope in suspense, as some of the cardinals hope the French will conquer Milan, whilst others think they will soon return to France.
Alarcon has arrived with good news.
Venetians. Viceroy of Naples, &c.
Thanks him for his reward. Duke of Bourbon, &c.
Has received letters from England in which the election of the Cardinal of England is warmly recommended to him. The English think that his election is almost sure, as though "God would work every day a miracle." They imagine that a person who is absent will be elected Pope. In order to satisfy the English, he has strongly recommended the election of the Cardinal of England. But the cardinals have sworn not to elect an absent person as Pope. Though they are in the habit of breaking their oaths, thinks they will fulfil them in this case, as they are afraid of the people, who clamorously demand that the Pope shall be elected from those who are present in the conclave. The English ambassadors know very well what incalculable calamities have been the consequences of the last election. Thanks him for the Order of the Golden Fleece.— Rome, the 28th of October 1523.
Addressed : "To the most sacred and always victorious Cœsar, King of Spain, &c., our sovereign Lord."
Indorsed : "To the King. 1523. Rome. Duke of Sessa. The 28th of October. Answered."
Spanish. Autograph in cipher. Contemporary deciphering. pp. 13.
28 Oct.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist. Salazar. A. 29. f. 285.
607. The Duke Of Sessa to the Emperor.
This document is a duplicate of the one preceding.


  • 1. Between the Pope, the Emperor, the King of England, &c.
  • 2. Although the despatch is dated the 2nd of October, it was written in the month of September. The 12th of next month is, therefore, the 12th of October.
  • 3. Count Felix Fuerstenberg.