Spain: March 1526, 16-25

Pages 602-621

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 3 Part 1, 1525-1526. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1873.

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March 1526, 16-25

16 March. 363. Commander Herrera to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 98.
On the 27th inst., after the arrival of the Duke's servant (Pero Hernandez) with the Imperial despatches, he (Herrera) and his colleague (the Duke of Sessa) waited upon His Holiness, gave him the Emperor's holograph letter, and explained the contents of despatches they themselves had received.
(Cipher:) His Holiness found it very strange that some of the articles in the new draft should be so different from those he (Herrera) had first brought to Rome, especially in what relates to Ferrara and Milan. He (Herrera) can positively assert that the Pope is not at all pleased with the said articles. Knowing very well that neither the Duke nor he (Herrera) had powers to add or retrench anything (alargar ni acortar), he has, of his own accord, come to the resolution of suspending the negotiations. Indeed, the Pope says that he will rather be at the Emperor's mercy (de estar á voluntad de V. Mag.) than enter into a league so much to the prejudice of the Apostolic See and his own, as, were he to do so, Italy would thereby have a bad opinion of him. For (says he) the Duke of Ferrara being a vassal of the Church, and having committed so many acts of disobedience and other offences towards her, it is not just to admit him into the league unless the Pope, whose subject he is, obtain previous satisfaction. He had, therefore, decided to leave matters in suspense until he heard from Spain. Commander Herrera thinks the Pope to be now actuated by one of these two motives: Either he has received information [from Spain] stating that the Viceroy of Naples brings powers to treat with him upon a broader basis; or he imagines that the French King will not keep his faith. Both motives are publicly assigned in Rome for this sudden alteration in the Pope's views. Possibly, also, the Pope might think that the Emperor would not set his prisoner free without his having first fulfilled at least one part of the conditions, and in that case that he (the Pope) would become more necessary to the Emperor than he is now, and that he might thereby improve his position in the treaty. Whatever of these motives may be the right one, there can be no doubt that the Pope has materially changed in his politics.
(Common writing:) His Holiness sent, the other day, to the King of France one Paulo Vittor (Vettori), Captain of his galleys, with the ostensible commission of visiting him (the King) upon his arrival at Bayonne, and congratulating him upon his deliverance from captivity, and also to ask his help against the Turk in favour of the King of Hungary. On his arrival at Florence the Captain fell suddenly ill and died. His Holiness has appointed in his place a gentleman of the Marquis de Mantua, named Capin, who has twice visited the Imperial court on his master's behalf, and returned not long ago [from Toledo]. His mission is of the same nature as that of his predecessor, but most people imagine that there is something more in it.
Hearing that His Imperial Majesty intended Cardinal Colonna to have his share in the present negotiations, and that he had been summoned to Rome for that particular purpose, the Pope became so furious that the ambassadors had the greatest possible difficulty in calming him down. He (the Pope) kept saying with great emphasis that Cardinal Colonna's services to the Emperor in former times could not be compared with his own, and that now his friendship was much to be preferred to that of the Cardinal. It seemed to him as if the Imperial ambassadors did it on purpose, and wanted to use Cardinal Colonna as a sort of obstacle or stumbling-block in his way. In fact, he is very much offended at this, because (he says) neither had the Emperor written to him on the subject, nor had the ambassadors, as he presumed, received any orders to that effect.
(Cipher:) The fact is that the Emperor's letter to Colonna, begging him to come to Rome and take part in the negotiations, was duly forwarded to him by the ambassadors; but as they are not on good terms, the Cardinal decided not to come to Rome, and excused himself by saying he had a fit of the gout. Matters between him and the Pope have come to such a pitch that, according to what he (Herrera) saw of the Pope that day, there is very little hope of a settlement (concierto). A copy of the proposed treaty has, however, been sent to the Cardinal as well as a memorandum of what has since been done in this affair.
(Common writing:) The Emperor may feel sure that the Pope will not grant the Crusade until everything in which he himself is personally concerned be settled to his satisfaction. To the application about Cardinals' hats to be given to certain ecclesiastics recommended by the Emperor, he has answered that it is his intention to grant them on the first four emberweeks (temporas) of this year. Fancies that this promise will be fulfilled just as that of the Crusade has been. The affair respecting the Monte Aragon patronage, (fn. n1) he has likewise promised to the Duke of Sessa and to himself to refer to the College of Cardinals for their decision.
There can be no doubt that the Pope's Legate [in Spain] advised him beforehand of the contents of the treaty (concordia) with France, for he knew of it ten days before the Imperial despatches reached Rome.
As the articles were not to his taste he (the Pope) issued orders to have Parma, Plazencia (Piacenza), Modena and certain towns of the Florentines immediately fortified. This the Pope alleges is being done merely as a precaution and in order to protect his Estates, as he has heard that the Duke of Ferrara is raising both infantry and cavalry in his own lands, and also from fear of certain Italian bands that have lately quitted the Imperial camp for want of pay and are committing all kinds of ravages in the territory of the Church, which last intelligence is unfortunately too true.
The Emperor's journey to Italy is anxiously expected by most people, though there are many who would prevent it if they could. The longer it is put off the more chance these agitators and disturbers of the public peace will have, as their intrigues will not cease until they gain their end.
Here [at Rome] things are at rest for the present, as they are waiting to see what the French King will do.
On Sunday the 11th inst., the Pope, accompanied by all the Cardinals, went to St. Peter's, where a most solemn mass was celebrated. After the mass, which was said by Cardinal de Tortosa, (fn. n2) a bishop mounted the pulpit and delivered an oration in favour of the peace just made and in commendation and praise of His Imperial Majesty. The streets of Rome were profusely illuminated during the night, and on the ensuing one salvoes of artillery were fired.
If His Imperial Majesty wishes to be apprised in time of whatever happens [in Italy], funds must be provided with which to pay the messengers. Had there been money to defray his expenses, the present bearer might have been despatched eight days ago. He (Herrera) cannot sufficiently recommend the importance of such services being quickly and liberally remunerated, since it is a well-known fact that prompt advices generally ensure the success of negotiations.
(Common writing:) The Marquis del Guasto and Antonio de Leyva have been duly informed of the contents of this despatch, as likewise the Imperial ambassadors residing at Venice.
It is positively asserted that the Turk has lately made his peace with the King of Hungary, and that this is with a view to the invasion of Naples and Sicily. If so, it must be owned that those kingdoms are in great danger, owing to their defences being scantily provided for.—Rome, 16 March 1526.
Signed: "Herrera."
Addressed: "Sacræ, Cesareæ, Catholicæ Majestati."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. Rome. Commander Herrera, 16 March."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 4.
16 March. 364. The Duke of Sessa, Imperial Ambassador at Rome, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 87.
Has duly received through Pero Hernandez, his servant, the Emperor's letter of the 8th of February last, and would already have answered it had it not been that he waited to see if he could not give a better account of the negotiation.
(Cipher:) The Emperor's answer to the ambassadors' joint despatch [of the 16th Dec.] came to hand in due time; but ten days previous to that the Pope had heard from his Legate [in Spain], and was informed of its contents. It is to be presumed, judging charitably, that His Holiness has passed all this time meditating on his affairs, especially as he had knowledge of certain matters which have lately transpired, but of which the Imperial ambassadors were then ignorant. He therefore decided to send to France Paulo Vitor, (fn. n3) the Captain of his galleys, who, on his arrival at Florence, fell ill and died, perhaps in consequence of the charge he was intrusted with. (fn. n4) The Captain's place was immediately filled up by one Capin, (fn. n5) a gentleman of the household of the Marquis of Mantua, lately returned from the Imperial court. The Pope has sent Prothonotary Gambara—a very able man and much devoted to His Holiness—to England. All these appointments seem to have been made in accordance with the advice of the Venetians, as the Pope has bad plenty of time before him to consult his friends, &c. The ostensible objects of these several missions is to congratulate the French King upon his deliverance from captivity; the secret—for there is certainly one—he (Sessa) leaves to His Imperial Majesty's consideration. It is quite enough for him to know that the Venetians are sending similar embassies [to France], as His Imperial Majesty cannot fail to have been informed by Caracciolo and Alonso Sanchez.
He (Sessa) has deemed it necessary to enter into certain details in order that the object and tendency of these appointments may be better understood. They were, as above stated, made several days before the Imperial despatches arrived, and in anticipation of their contents, and therefore the Imperial ambassadors cannot in any way be made responsible if they fail in their negotiations.
(Common writing:) Congratulates the Emperor on the happy news conveyed in his letter of the 8th ult., (fn. n6) relating to the agreement (felicissimo acordio) just made with the French King. Hopes it will last long and be the means of bringing peace to the Christian world. On the presentation of the Emperor's letters to the Pope and Cardinals announcing that happy event, everyone seemed pleased; and on Sunday last the proclamation was made and solemnized with mass and torches, such as are used in this city, though not all burned equally bright. (fn. n7)
(Common writing:) Immediately upon the arrival of the Imperial despatches the ambassadors began to negotiate. At first, the Pope, with a view, no doubt, to gain time, asked the ambassadors several questions, which they answered as best they could, so that many days passed en demandas y respuestas. After which His Holiness, always affecting to be desirous of bringing the pending negotiation to a conclusion, said that he would willingly have subscribed his name to the deed had he not observed that some of the articles had been considerably changed to his prejudice. He preferred waiting for the Emperor's arrival [in Italy], without any treaty at all to signing one which had evidently been framed against him. Had the ambassadors been furnished with ample powers to augment or diminish (disminuir y acrecentar), which he believed they had not, he (the Pope) would at once have modified his conditions so as to meet the Emperor's wishes. But since they had no such powers, he could not accept proposals that were evidently injurious to him, because it would be necessary to consult over them with the Emperor [in Spain], and during that time he (the Pope) would have to remain with his hands tied and unable to come to a decision in the affair, to the utter disappointment and despair of his friends, who never would trust him again. The reasons he had for not signing the treaty were as follows: 1st. With regard to Milan. If the Emperor, as he professed, really wished for the peace of Italy, he might have made a settlement more agreeable to Italians in general. Though he (the Pope) did not object to the person of M. de Bourbon, whom he loved equally with the Duke [Sforza] of Milan, his appointment was not much to the taste of other Italian Princes, especially of the Venetians, and thus a door was already opened whereby to maintain the war [in Italy]. Another occasion for war and disturbance lay in the treaty itself, for by one of its articles the Emperor was bound to withdraw his army from Lombardy, and that could not be accomplished until the two castles of Milan and Cremona had fairly fallen into his hands, so that if those two places held out long the object of the treaty was frustrated, and he (the Pope) frustrated in his intentions, which were to purge Italy from every sort of oppression and warlike commotion, for (added the Pope) it would be unreasonable to expect that His Imperial Majesty should leave Lombardy at the mercy of others, thereby meaning, as he (Sessa) believes, that the Venetians, finding no resistance, might run to the Duke's assistance.
2. Respecting Ferrara, His Holiness argued that whereas the Emperor's desire was that he (the Pope) should not trouble himself at all with Milan—which is undoubtedly a fief of the Empire—he did not see why the duchy of Ferrara being a fief of the Church, he (the Pope) should not be at liberty to inflict punishment upon that Duke, just as the Emperor is about to do upon his subject, the Duke of Milan.
In the ambassador's opinion, the only difference between the two cases is this, that in the contract passed between the Pope and the Duke for the restitution of Rezzo and Rubiera, it was stipulated that in the event of the latter refusing to comply with the conditions therein contained he should bear the penalty of 100,000 ducats. This sum the Pope intended to make up by giving the Duke the investiture of Ferrara and of some other towns and lands which he says the Duke holds from the Church. And although the Pope made decidedly a good bargain, since he would thus recover what he was otherwise bound to pay to the Emperor on account of the said restitution, it may be confidently asserted that the difficulty—now reduced to the sum of 100,000 ducats—might easily be surmounted, as there would be no want of offers to tempt the Duke with. (fn. n8)
3. With regard to the Salt, the Pope thought that it was injurious to his person and dignity not to grant it altogether and for ever (perpetua). That, however, was of no great importance.
4. Respecting Naples, he said that he wanted neither more nor less than what the Emperor himself had sworn and promised in the last investiture.
These are the objections which the Pope has raised on each of the articles. In reality, it is only a new device of his to gain time. The cause and origin of all—if he (Sessa) is not greatly mistaken—lies in a certain hope which these people and the rest of the Italian Princes have conceived, that the French King will not stand by his word. But how can they trust a man who must break faith with another before he gives it to them? This is an argument which he (Sessa) has often addressed to them, and although they do not deny the fact altogether, the question, like many others, remains unanswered.
The expected arrival of the Viceroy (Lannoy) is another of the causes tending to nourish their hopes. They believe that their affairs may be greatly improved by his coming here, and that he will bring most ample faculties [to treat]. They have also some faint hopes of the Duke of Milan being maintained in the possession of his Estate, founded on no other motive than the supposed jealousy of the Viceroy, who, they say, dislikes Bourbon's aggrandisement and promotion. (fn. n9) So much is this the case that they make no mystery about it, and show great confidence in their success. Though he (Sessa)—had he only consulted his own interest—might have avoided entering on so delicate a subject, yet, esteeming more highly the interest of His Imperial Majesty, he has preferred to state the plain truth. (fn. n10) As far as he can judge, Alberto del Carpio (di Carpi) is again at work, and the Venetians are also very active.
(Common writing:) The suspension of hostilities or truce which he and his colleague (Herrera) deemed fit to make with the Pope, does not mean that they were actually at war; it was designed for the purpose of preventing his entering into a league with the enemy. Their intrigues were very active at the time; and had not the suspension been agreed upon, he (Sessa) can assure His Imperial Majesty that the treaty between France, England and Venice would have been concluded.
As soon as he and Herrera received the Imperial despatches they wrote to his Reverence Cardinal Colonna, inviting him to come [to Rome]. He answered that he could not, owing to a slight indisposition from which he was suffering at the time. The ambassadors thought proper to acquaint His Holiness with this, that he might know how much the Emperor esteemed him and desired his safety and welfare. But the Pope became so angry when he heard of it (fn. n11) that he (Sessa) does not recollect having ever seen him in such a state of mind, his condition being naturally mild and most patient. (Cipher:) Indeed, he said in a very angry tone that he hoped His Imperial Majesty would order Cardinal Colonna immediately to return [to Rome], there to fill his office as a good ecclesiastic, with due respect and obedience to the Apostolic See, although, on the other hand, that would only be an encouragement to him (the Cardinal) to persevere in the wrong path he had taken. If His Imperial Majesty had favoured him in Pope Adrian's time, in reward of his services, that was no reason to despise his own, which had been much greater.
The Pope complained, besides, of the Cardinal's absence [from Rome]. He had never given occasion for it, but he would not consent to beg him to return. The ambassadors replied as best they could, the Pope's anger was soothed, and the affair remained as it was. The Cardinal has since written to say that he did not consider he could come to Rome in safety, but that if the Imperial service required his presence he would certainly obey the ambassadors' summons and run the risk of the Pope's enmity.
Respecting the Cardinals' hats, the Pope has promised them for the four first emberweeks of this year.
Jacopo Salviatis is very grateful for the Emperor's holograph letter to him, and the ambassadors find him always very well disposed.
The Marquis del Guasto [and Antonio de Leyva] have been duly informed of the new turn the negotiations have lately taken. Prothonotary Caracciolo and his colleague at Venice have also been written to with the secrecy and caution which His Imperial Majesty has ordered to be used in such matters. It is useless, for the present, to carry on negotiations [at Venice], for the affairs here are at a standstill and will be so for some time.
Has spoken with Cardinal Campeggio respecting the abbacy of San Juan del Poyo. He (Campeggio) is preparing an answer to His Imperial Majesty. The affair of Belchite is settled, as Secretary Soria must have been informed. The Cardinal ought to be thanked for his exertions.
With regard to the Crusade, there is no hope of His Holiness granting it for the present. He (Sessa) has often spoken to him about it, but he persists in his refusal, and will not move a step in the affair until His Imperial Majesty give him full satisfaction in other matters.
Neither will the Pope grant the incorporation of the priorate of Xea (Exea in Aragon), for which an application has been made. This, however, might have been easily obtained from his Legate at the Imperial court, for he had the faculty to decree the said incorporation, and is known to have consented to the wishes of others, which, by the way, has not given much satisfaction here.
Respecting the priorate of San Marçal, in Navarre, the Pope has appointed Cardinal Santiquatro (Sancti Quatuor) to examine the bull of erection and report upon it.
Count Baltasar de Castellon (Baldassare di Castiglione), now Papal Nuncio (fn. n12) at the Imperial court, is doing very good service, and whenever he writes, shows his inclination to the Imperial service. He (Sessa) has thought fit to mention the fact, that the Emperor may know who are his true friends.
Doubts not but that Ascanio Coluna (Colonna) has already written about a certain excommunication here fulminated against his person, the cause of the sentence being a lawsuit now pending between him and Cardinal Cesarino on the limits of a town belonging to the former. The Cardinal asks for securities that the adverse party will fulfil his promise, and Colonna refuses to give any. Ever since the present Pope (Clement VII.) was created, the lawsuit has been delayed, no doubt with a view to bring on some sort of agreement between the contending parties; but seeing that this could not be effected, the Pope has lately allowed justice to take its course; hence the excommunication and other sentences at which Ascanio Colonna has taken offence. They (the ambassadors) have been trying to have the excommunication withdrawn, in order to see whether the parties might afterwards be brought to terms. Have succeeded so far that the Pope has issued a brief a beneplacito, absolving Colonna. They will do their utmost to have this business satisfactorily settled, but have no great confidence in their success.—Rome, 16th March 1526.
Signed: "El Duque de Sesa."
(Cipher:) The Pope says that in the article about Milan there ought to be a clause intimating that the investiture is to be granted to the Duke of Bourbon and to his successors.
(Common writing:) Her most Serene Highness the Infanta of Castille and Archduchess of Austria (fn. n13) is in the family-way. May she be delivered of a son, and may we soon see the Emperor with the succession so much desired!
Addressed: "To the most Sacred and Invincible Cesar, King of Spain and of the two Sicilies, our Sovereign and Lord."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. Rome. The Duke of Sessa, 16 March."
Spanish. Original mostly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 9.
18 March. 365. The Bishop of Grassa, Lord of Monaco, to Lope de Soria, Imperial Ambassador in Genoa.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 108.
Most Magnificent Sir.—Since the departure of the brigantine sent hither by your Worship, we have heard that the ship thought to be La Portunda is, in reality, a French war-vessel bound for the Levant. La Muxica was not captured, as stated in my former letter; it was another ship whose name I have not been able to ascertain. All the Spaniards taken on board the Lomellina have been set at liberty, and are now here; they say that Andrea Doria intends to release the ship also. His galleys are now at Antibo.—Monego, 18 of March 1526.
Addressed: "To the most Magnificent Don Lope de Soria, Imperial Ambassador in Genoa."
Indorsed: "A copy of what the Lord of Monego wrote to the Ambassador."
Spanish. Contemporary copy. p. 1.
18 March. 366. Lope de Soria, Imperial Ambassador in Genoa, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
ff. 110–4.
Wrote on the 24th, in answer to His Imperial Majesty's letter of the 8th; sent it to Milan to be delivered to Arana, who was going to Spain as courier; but having since heard that he (Arana) had been detained in France, he now forwards copy of the same by another conveyance.
Commander Ycarte (Ycart) left for Naples on the 9th inst., taking with him five galleys, three of the Viceroy [Charles de Lannoy], one of Il Gobo, and one more called "La Calabresa."
The six galleys destined to escort the Duke of Bourbon, namely, two of Sicily, one of Il Gobo, and three more belonging to this Republic, are provided with every necessary. He (Soria) has given to the Sicilian galleys, in particular, 1,000 cr. (escudos), to lay in provision, &c. Has not yet despatched them on their mission owing to the report that Andrea Doria had seized upon a carak and a ship of this city (Genoa) bound for Spain. Considering that their six galleys had to sail for upwards of 100 leagues in sight of the French coast, and that the said Andrea Doria and the French had twelve galleys of their own, the people of this city were naturally afraid of sending theirs to sea. Accordingly, he (Soria) and the Doge despatched a brigantine to the Lord of Monego (Monaco), to ascertain from him the truth of the report and inquire what reasons the said Andrea Doria could have for thus capturing the galleys of this Republic after the proclamation of the peace. The Lord of Monego has answered (fn. n14) that the report is quite true. Not only has the said Andrea Doria taken at sea the carak of the Republic, disembarked its artillery and stored it at Antibo (Antibes), but he has also seized upon a Spanish ship called Muxica. He also writes that the galleys of Baron de Sant Branchat have chased and captured, near the islands of Hyères, another Vizcayan ship, and that both Doria and the French were laying their hands on every merchant vessel they met at sea, notwithstanding the proclamation of the peace.
In consequence of this intelligence the Doge has thought it prudent for the galleys not to leave this port without first consulting His Imperial Majesty and the Duke of Bourbon, lest Doria and his men should come down during their absence and ravage this coast. He (Soria) has, in union with the said Doge, sent Donato de Tassis to the Duke of Bourbon to apprise him of the reason why the galleys have not sailed, and is thinking of despatching a messenger to the Viceroy also, that he may, on his passage through France, make due complaint to the King of such warlike proceedings in time of peace.
He (Soria) encloses copy of the letter received from the Lord of Monego (Monaco), that His Imperial Majesty may fully appreciate the reasons for keeping back the said galleys, for not only has Andrea Doria seized on the aforesaid carack and ship, he has also taken a galleon which he (Soria) and the Doge sent on the 3d of February with despatches to His Imperial Majesty, the bearer of which despatches, a Spaniard named Gaspar de Villafranca, had the greatest difficulty in reaching the shore in safety. Having applied for a safe-conduct from the governor of Provence it was granted to him, but he was taken prisoner at Grassa, and sent under escort to Sauz (Aix?), where, after having had the despatches taken from him and read them, he was set at liberty. During the truce a brig which he (Soria) sent to Narbonne on the 4th of November, also with despatches for His Imperial Majesty, was similarly captured: all which calls for a minute inquiry into such extraordinary doings in time of peace.
The Doge has told him (Soria) that the Republic is willing to serve His Imperial Majesty with four caraks, as they promised last year; but he wants to know for certain when they will be wanted, and in what port of His Majesty's dominions, because the Republic, being very poor just now, are desirous not to engage the crews and fit out their galleys before they are actually required.
The Duke of Sessa and Commander Herrera have both written to say that the latter (Herrera) had nearly finished his business with the Pope, and was about to leave for Spain. His Holiness had made all manner of demonstrations of joy at the conclusion of the peace between His Imperial Majesty and the King of France; illuminations and other rejoicings had been ordered throughout the dominions of the Church, and the people called His Holiness the Pope the Maker and Preserver of Peace. (fn. n15)
His Holiness sent Paulo Victorio to the King of France, and Prothonotary Gambara to that of England. The former fell ill at Florence, and the Pope replaced him by Chiapino, a servant of the Marquis of Mantua. Their mission, as it would appear, is to inform those Princes of the preparations the Turk is making against Christendom. (Cipher:) Others, however, say that it is to induce the King of France not to fulfil his engagements to His Imperial Majesty.
(Common writing:) Some companies (banderas) of light cavalry and Italian infantry have already been dismissed, to the great satisfaction of the people in general, owing to the damage they caused in the country and the small service they rendered.
Whilst writing the above, news has come that the five galleys of Commander Ycart that left this port for Naples met near Pomblin (Piombino) four Turkish vessels (fustas), fought and captured them. No confirmation of the news has yet come; but he (Soria) has no doubt that the report is true, for he has a letter from the said Commander, dated Porto Veneris (Portvendre), in which he says that four Turkish sail (fustas) were reported in those seas, and that he was about to sail in search of them.—Genoa, 17 March 1525.
Signed: "Lope de Soria."
P.S,.—This letter, closed on the 18th, is a duplicate of that sent to His Imperial Majesty by Donato Tassis. Sends it by a messenger whom the Doge and he (Soria) are about to despatch to the Viceroy.
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imperial, Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1525. From Genoa. Lope de Soria, 18th March."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. By duplicate. Contemporary deciphering on the same sheet. pp. 4.
19 March. 367. The Same to the Same.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 114.
His letter of the 16th was closed and sealed when a messenger arrived [in Rome] on his way to Naples. He had been despatched by the Viceroy (Charles de Lannoy), who, at the date of his leaving Vitoria on the 5th, was still at that place with the French King. The news has, it would appear, given general satisfaction.
Enclosed is a letter from Commander Ycart, the Admiral (Capitan) of the Spanish fleet of galleys, announcing the capture of four Turkish sail (fustas), at which the people of Rome have much rejoiced.
The 300 ducats which he (the Duke) and Commander Herrera borrowed [in Rome] to defray the expenses of the three last messengers are still unpaid, the bills drawn by the ambassadors upon the Grand Chancellor (Mercurino Gattinara) having been protested, together with another bill of 100 ducats advanced to Pero Hernandez when he brought, posthaste, the Emperor's last despatches. Begs for the payment of the aforesaid sums, as it is not just that he (the Duke) should have to meet such expenses out of his own pocket. Indeed, the present messenger who takes his despatch of the 16th and the present one has been detained until to-day for want of money.—Rome, 19 March 1526.
Signed: "El Duque de Sesa."
Addressed: "To the most Sacred and Invincible Cesar, King of Spain and of the two Sicilies, our Sovereign and Lord."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. Rome. The Duke of Sessa, 16 March."
Spanish. Original. p. 1½.
22 March. 368. Bishop Acuña's Confession.
M. D. Pasc. d. G.
Pa. r. a. l. Hist. d.
Esp. No. 68.
Torture was applied on the 22d. A weight of about 100 pounds was attached to the feet of the Bishop. He was then lifted up. The alcalde (Ronquillo) told him that if he did not confess the murder of Mendo de Noguerol, the warder (alcaide) of Simancas, he would die on the rack.
He accordingly confessed that it was he who did it. Upon which, on the following day, the 23d, Ronquillo sentenced him to death, and he was strangulated within the fortress. (fn. n16)
Indorsed: "The Confession made by the Bishop of Zamora (Don Antonio de Acuña), after the torture administered to him by the Alcalde Ronquillo."
Spanish. Original. p. 1.
22 March. 369. The Emperor to the Licentiate Ronquillo, Alcalde of the Imperial Household.
S. E. L. 14, f. 8. Ruy Diaz de Puebla states that his grandfather, Doctor Puebla, was for many years ambassador of Ferdinand and Isabella, in England. On the death of Queen Isabella, he (Puebla) remained in England as ambassador of King Ferdinand.
According to the statement of the said Diaz, a great portion of his salary, whilst in the said embassy, is still due to him. Orders him to examine carefully the entry-books and papers of that time and report to him upon them.
Spanish. Original draft. pp. 3.
23 March. 370. Ochoa de Ysasaga to the Emperor.
S. E. C. L. 14,
f. 11.
In pursuance of orders from the Viceroy of Naples (Charles de Lannoy), transmitted from Aranda [de Duero] by Knight-Commander Peñalosa, he (Ochoa) started with others for France on business connected with the French King's liberation. At Mont de Marçan they met the Queen Regent (Louise de Savoie) and the Dauphin, who were going down to the frontier of Spain; but as all the acts and ceremonies attending the King's restoration to liberty have been fully described by the said Viceroy, he (Ochoa) will limit his remarks to what he saw and heard in France.
The French, in general, seem pleased at their King having married the Emperor's sister (Madame Eleonor). The common people are anxious for peace; the barons and knights wish for war.
Though the Royal Princes and most of the courtiers, in the course of conversation, give His Imperial Majesty the title of Emperor, others only call him King of Castile, pretending that since the times of Carlo Magno there has been no other Emperor crowned; that the crown of the Empire belongs by right to France, and that His Imperial Majesty will never possess the two crowns that are required for such an Emperor.
As the French are very cunning and pliant until they have gained their object (hasta hazer sus negocios), they speak well [of the Emperor] for the present moment, and yet he (Ochoa) has heard it stated everywhere in France that the Pope, the Venetians, the Switzers and other Italian potentates have made together a league and confederacy to prevent His Imperial Majesty's coronation. That upon the King's return from captivity, the said powers would try to gain him over to their opinion, and that ambassadors from Venice and Florence had already arrived for that purpose.
In France people dare not express their sentiments in public, but do so secretly and among themselves. They have a bad opinion of their King, whom they do not love. They say that they would have much preferred his remaining in prison; and at Bayonne, when the Dauphin and his brother left [for Spain], there was much sadness shown.
Has heard many Frenchmen say that the battle of Pavia is likely to be hereafter the cause of much confusion and trouble in France, as there is not in the country now the union that there used to be in most matters. Many fear and dread the King, and have actually emigrated in consequence of his return to France. Mons. de Bourbon was very much considered and respected by the people, and looked upon as a wise statesman. Many maintain that his expulsion has caused much harm to the country.
An opinion is current among Frenchmen that all agreements (conciertos) made by their King whilst in prison, are null and void, and that the rights of France on Naples and Milan cannot be relinquished or alienated.
With regard to the duchy of Burgundy, the condition is intolerably harsh, that territory happening to be rich, populous and full of fortresses and castles. They had better die, they say, than give it up. Others maintain that even if Burgundy were to be ceded in order to ensure the liberty of their King, it must be invaded and retaken as soon as possible, for France cannot be without.
Don Enrique de Labrit (Albret) is in great favour at the court of France. It is said that he is intent upon the recovery (recabdança) of Navarre. Whilst His Imperial Majesty goes to Italy for his coronation [as King of the Romans], he (Albret) is to collect an army and again try to conquer that kingdom. He imagines that the Navarrese will rise in his favour as soon as he shows himself, and asserts that they would have done so when Mons. de Mazparroz (fn. n17) invaded their country had they seen his own arms instead of those of France (fn. n18) on his tent and at the door [of his house]. He (Albret) declares that had Mons. de Mazparroz remained at Pamplona and strengthened himself there (rehiciera), instead of marching on to Logroño as he did, he would still be King of Navarre. So they style him in France to this day. There is a talk of his marrying Madame d'Alençon, King Francis' sister, (fn. n19) but she will not have him for a husband, and he himself is said to be more inclined to Madame Renel (Renée de France). (fn. n20) It is also rumoured that King Francis, without apparently taking part in this affair, is to put forward this Henry Labrit as an instrument (torcedor) wherewith to molest and worry His Imperial Majesty on the side of Navarre, and prevent his journey to Italy. Has even been told that the said Labrit is already storing provisions in his castle of Pao (Pau) for that purpose.
Juan Lopez, the pilot, who was at Madrid with the French King, and came to France with letters to Madame [Louise?] has obtained the command of four of the galleys which are, now being fitted out at Marseilles. There are to be 20 in all, besides several other vessels, and the great Admiral's ship, the whole of which are destined for the Emperor's service, according to the treaty [of Madrid]. His (Ochoa's) opinion is that the Emperor ought by no means to accept the services of this French fleet unless the crews are changed and the vessels manned with troops of other nations, for certainly these Frenchmen are not to be trusted in a matter of this kind.
A hope is generally entertained here in France that Madame Eleonor, the Emperor's sister, now the wife of King Francis, will be able to achieve the restoration of his (the King's) sons. Asks for the Emperor's forgiveness if he mixes himself up with such matters, but his private opinion is that even in the event of the French King's fulfilling his promise, the Dauphin's return ought to be delayed until the plans and intentions of His Imperial Majesty are fairly carried out; for, although Frenchmen at present speak well, it is notorious that their King and he of England are good friends, and that they think of marrying the Dauphin to Princess Mary of England, thereby intending to stop the mouths of the English and put aside their old claims on the duchy of Guienne. He (Ochoa) happens to have in his possession the original treaty which Henry VII. of England, father of the present King, sent to the Catholic Kings of Spain (fn. n21) at their request, through Doctor de la Puebla, their ambassador at that Court, and he can see very clearly how matters stand between the two countries.
It is reported that the King of France has decided to convoke the General Estates of his kingdom, to consult them on the best means of obtaining the liberation of his sons, and that there will be many opinions and subtle devices started respecting that particular question.
The day that the King of France was released from his captivity he leaped from the boat, with water up to his knees, mounted a horse that had been prepared for him, and rode, without stopping, to St. Jean de Lus, where he dined, and was visited by the flower of the French nobility, who came to congratulate him.
On hearing that the exchange had been effected and the King set free, he (Ochoa), with the advice and consent of his comrades in the mission, started for Bayonne. Met the King on the road between one and two in the afternoon. He was riding post, both sides of the road to St. Jean de Lus being lined with people from the neighbouring towns. Behind him came, with their colours flying, two companies (banderas) of infantry, and then the archers of his guard, 400 in number. Don Enrique de Labrit rode by the King's side, conversing with him all the time. The King left Bayonne on the ensuing Tuesday, the 20th instant, and took the road to Bourdeaux, to have more leisure to attend to the business of the treaty, as it is believed, but, in reality, to be further away from the Spanish frontier; for the truth is that when he leaped from the boat he gave no signs of waiting for the exchange and other ceremonies to be performed, according to the treaty, but rode off as fast as he could.
In public it is generally asserted that the King wishes to fulfil his engagements, and that he says that the Emperor's friendship is as necessary to him as his is to the Emperor. God grant that under these and similar protestations no duplicity (dobladura) lie concealed!
Everything the French did and said on the occasion of the exchange seemed as if there had been some plot for the liberation of their King; for every town 40 leagues round had been placed in a state of defence, as well as the whole of the Bearn, and men-at-arms were in perfect readiness within 20 leagues of Bayonne. However, the precautions taken by the Viceroy; the good selection of the spot whereat the exchange was to be made and the King restored to liberty; the military preparations in Guipuzcoa, and the circumstance of his (Ochoa's) and his comrades being so mixed up with the French, prevented the execution of their plans. That they really intended to try some experiment cannot be doubted, for, on Saturday morning, the 27th inst., the news arrived in Bayonne that the King and his two sons had recovered their liberty owing to a certain stratagem, upon which great rejoicings took place in the city for more than a quarter of an hour, until it was ascertained that the whole account was untrue.
Till the very day of the Dauphin and his brother's departure it was confidently asserted that the Dauphin alone would go to Spain, accompanied by 12 French nobles especially named for that purpose; but it would appear that as some of them hesitated (esquerdeavan) and others were not at all inclined to go, the King said in a passion, "Let my two sons go at once," and they accordingly went to the frontier.
It is further reported that the King of France wishes to have 4,000 Spaniards for his body guard, just as the Emperor has his old bands (los soldados viejos). The French praise and esteem Spaniards beyond other nations for their courage in war; and the King frequently says that he will secure the services of a few by means of rich presents and a high stipend, and that when some shall have enlisted the rest will follow (despues unos à otros acarrearan). He complains of the Switzers, who (he says) did not behave well at the battle of Pavia.
Many horses come from Spain to be sold in France, and the traffic will go on increasing unless the Emperor puts a stop to it.
Captain Franchel, (fn. n22) the warder (alcayde) of Fuentarrabia, was tried and sentenced not to bear armour for the rest of his life, and to seven years' exile from Court, because of his not having been slain or made prisoner whilst employed in the defence of that castle. When he (Ochoa), after the death of King Ferdinand, came from Portugal, his services were required on the frontier of Guipuzcoa, where he has resided ever since until the Viceroy bade him come to France. He knows the castle of Fuentarrabia very well, and how very important it is to have its walls repaired and its magazines well stored, so as to be able to stand a siege. Hears the French say that there is not provision in it for more than three days, and that immediately after the King's return from Spain there was some idea of getting it by a coup de main. Does not wonder at this, for it is the habit in Castile never to provide for defence until the danger is imminent. The castle of Yrun cost too much money to fortify, owing to the bad direction of the works. In its present situation it is of no use at all, and its garrison could be compelled to surrender in one hour's time. It must be demolished or removed to the commanding eminence (padrastro) higher up, whence the two passes of Veoybia (Behovie) and Areyzmacurta might be easily defended.—Ysasaga, 23 March 1526.
Signed: "El Comendador Ochoa de Ysasaga."
Addressed: "To the King."
Spanish. Holograph. pp. 15.
24 March. 371. Prothonotary Caracciolo, Imperial Ambassador at Venice, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
ff. 117–20.
(Cipher:) Has in a former despatch informed His Imperial Majesty how, in obedience to the Emperor's commands, he (Caracciolo) had sent a trusty person to the Duke of Ferrara, requesting him to appoint an agent with whom to discuss matters. Accordingly, the Duke deputed one of his principal councillors (un suo principalassimo), named Micer Antonio di Constabile, and duly accredited him to hear what the Prothonotary had to say. The Imperial ambassador went on to show how beneficial the cession to the Pope of Rezzo and Rubiera might be to his master [the Duke], as he would thereby obtain ample compensation [from the Pope], and ensure for ever the Emperor's favour and protection. He (Caracciolo) did all he could to persuade Constabile that the Emperor, wishing the Duke's son to form part of his household, and even to become connected with him in marriage, (fn. n23) had always sought to advance him and increase his estate; everyone in Italy respected him, and he had nothing to fear from his neighbours. The agent, after consulting the Duke, his master, made the following answer to the ambassador's overtures: There was nothing the Duke wished for so much as to do the Emperor service and be considered as his faithful servant and vassal. He was at all times ready to sacrifice his estates and his life for the Emperor's sake, but begged most humbly not to be compelled to make the cession of Rezzo and Rubiera, as it would be his own ruin, without any material profit to the Emperor. He alleged that had he consented to the restitution of those estates, the present Pope (Clement VII.) would willingly have given him the investiture of Ferrara, besides certain censals and Salt taxes, amounting to about 36,000 ducats, and the remission of all the pains and censures he might have incurred against the Church. He had promised, besides, to make his son Cardinal, with a suitable allowance and promise of advancement. All which offers the Duke had constantly rejected, out of affection for the Empire. He begged to remind the Emperor that as long as he, the Duke, remained in his present condition, he could be of use to the Emperor, who might dispose of him as his vassal; but were he and his estates to be transferred to the Pope, he could no longer take the Emperor's part, and on some occasion might, perhaps, be compelled to act as his enemy. He therefore begged His Imperial Majesty not to abandon him in the present circumstances, but help and assist him in retaining possession of his estate as fief of the Empire (fn. n24) .....
He (Caracciolo) believes that the Duke is, to a certain extent, right in his reasoning. Besides, he hears [from Rome] that His Holiness refuses to accept the terms proposed by the Emperor, and therefore the restitution is no longer necessary. Even if the Duke [of Sessa] should write to say that the Pope relented and was ready to treat, there would be plenty of time again to sound the Duke on this question, for he (Caracciolo) having inquired what his views were respecting the treaty in general, and especially about the money, the Duke's agent positively declared, without entering into particulars, that if the restitution was put off, the Duke, his master, would willingly subscribe to any other demands on the part of the Emperor, whom he considers as virtually his Lord and patron.
Has been unwell since the commencement of Lent, many times with sciatica (dolor de fianchi), at others with fever. Has, notwithstanding, attended to business with his colleague (Alonso Sanchez), and will do all that is required to prepare for the Emperor's journey to Italy.—Venice, 24 March 1526.
Signed: "Prothonotary Caracciolo."
Addressed: "Sacræ, Cesareæ, Catholicæ Majestati."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. Venice. Prothonotary Caracciolo, 24th March. Answered."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on the margins. pp. 4.
25 March. 372. Antonioto Adorno, Doge of Genoa, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 124.
Has two letters to answer, of the 7th and 8th of last February. With regard to the four caracks which he (the Doge) has been ordered to get ready against His Majesty's arrival in Italy, besides the galleys that are already armed, he has to observe that Genoa is so poor and the citizens' substance so consumed by the last war that he really does not know where to turn for money. This not withstanding, such is his desire to please His Majesty and such his devotion to the Imperial service, that he will do his utmost to provide the said four caracks by imposing a new and heavy tax on the citizens of Genoa, which, as his ambassador at Court will sufficiently explain, is a dangerous experiment just now.—Genoa, 25th March 1526.
Signed: "Antoniotto Adorno."
Addressed: "To the Imperial, Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Genoa. From the Doge. 25th of March."
Italian. Original. pp. 2.


  • n1. This abbacy being a foundation of the Kings of Aragon, Charles naturally claimed the patronage of election, which was disputed by Rome.
  • n2. Wilhem Enkenvöert?
  • n3. Elsewhere called Paulo Vittorio and Vettori, which last was his real name. See Guicciardini and Alberti. In a despatch of the Duke of Sessa, 9 May 1523, abstracted by Bergenroth, vol. II., p. 548, he is called Pagolo Vettori.
  • n4. "No sé si de la carga que llevaba."
  • n5. Also called Cappino and Chiapino.
  • n6. No. 333, p. 564.
  • n7. This last paragraph is in cipher: "Pero no creo ardian todas por una mesura."
  • n8. "Y aunque hacia buen barato con que remborsaba los [ducados] que daba á V. Mag. por la restitucion de las dichas tierras, bien creo que estando la dificultad en estos cient mil ducados al fin la cosa se reduciria á buen estilo."
  • n9. "En especial con algunas expectaciones quo hay del sostenimiento del Duque de Milan en el Estado, no sé si verdaderas ó sacadas de no tener el dicho Visorey por muy acepta la grandeza de Borbon."
  • n10. "Tanto es que se certifican deste articulo, no con pequeña seguridad, y bien que á mi fuera conveniente callarlo, quanto al propio interesse, mas siendo mas deudor al de V. Mag. he querido menudamente dezir lo que alcanzo."
  • n11. "Alterose en tanto grado que jamas le he visto en aquel punto, por que de su natural es pacientissimo y alli rebosó sin bastar ninguna disimulacion."
  • n12. The celebrated author of "Il Cortegiano," first printed at Venice in 1528.
  • n13. Anna, daughter of Ladislas, King of Hungary and Bohemia, born in 1503; died 1547. She was married to the Archduke Ferdinand, brother of Charles V., in 1521. Their son, Maximilian II., inherited the Empire (1564–76). Although a niece of the Emperor, for she was the daughter of his sister Maria, the title of Infanta, which Sessa gives her, is not rightly applied, since only the sons and daughters, as well as brothers and sisters, of a reigning monarch in Castille used that title.
  • n14. See above, No. 362.
  • n15. "Intitulandolo Inventor y Conservador de las Pazes."
  • n16. The above is enclosed in a letter of Ronquillo to Francisco de los Cobos, one of the Emperor's secretaries, giving an account of the execution, dat. 23 March 1526.
  • n17. Mazparroz is evidently a mistake for Asparroz, or rather "André de Foix, Seigneur d'Asparròs," the brother of Lautrec. This invasion of Navarre took place in 1521. After gaining possession of Pamplona, the capital, Estella, and other towns, the French laid siege to Logroño, which made a stout resistance, thus giving time for the Count of Haro (Pedro Fernandez de Velasco), the Duke of Najera (D. Antonio Manrique de Lara), the Admiral of Castille (D. Fadrique Enriquez), and others, to collect their forces. A battle was fought at Esquiròs on the 30th of June 1521, in which the French were defeated with great loss and their general (Mons. d'Asparroz) taken prisoner.
  • n18. The Navarrese historians relate that, though this invasion was made in the name of John de Labrit (Albret) and of his son Henry, afterwards King of France, the French fleur-de-lis appeared on the banners of the invaders, and their war-cry was: Francia! Comunidades de Castilla!
  • n19. Margaret, widow of the Duke; she was ultimately married to Henry d'Albret.
  • n20. Daughter of Louis XII.; married to d'Este (Hercules), 30th July 1527.
  • n21. "La capitulacion y derecho antiguo que el Rey de Inglatierra tiene con Francia en mi poder está originalmente."
  • n22. Sandoval (Lib. XI., p. 585) calls him Mons. de Frange. Fontarrabia was retaken by the Constable of Castille (D. Iñigo Fernandez de Velasco), on the 30th of September 1524.
  • n23. "Volendo quello el suo figliolo no solo per servitore, ma per pariente."
  • n24. "A no mancarli di justitiar nel feudo que depende de V. Alta et Sacro Imperio."