Spain: June 1526, 11-20

Pages 740-761

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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June 1526, 11-20

11 June. 457. The Emperor to Don Hugo de Moncada.
Arch. d. Royme de
Belg. Doc. Hist.
III., f. 209.
Lanz. Corresp.,
f. 213.
His letters from Victoria and Cognac, advising his arrival at the court of France and fulfilment of his mission, have come to hand. Thanks him for the diligence used on the occasion, and for his leaving [Cognac] without raising suspicions about his departure. Hopes he (Don Hugo) has displayed the same zeal in his journey to Rome, and has by this time brought to an end, or nearly so, the negotiations intrusted to him. As success, however, depends in a great measure upon what is accomplished at Rome; as until the issue of Don Hugo's negotiations with the Pope be known, no definitive answer can be given to the new proposals made by the French King; it is the Emperor's intention to keep matters in suspense until that issue be communicated to him. For that purpose the Emperor has returned to the King the answer herein enclosed, (fn. n1) and ordered his Viceroy of Naples (Charles de Lannoy.) to stay at the court of France and keep matters as they are—without breaking off the negotiations—until information arrives of what he (Don Hugo) has been able to achieve [at Rome].
For which end, and the better to ensure the speedy termination of this affair, Don Hugo is to tell the Pope that although it be true that the French King makes some difficulty in surrendering Burgundy, he does not entirely refuse to comply with that condition [of the treaty of Madrid], but offers, in case of his being prevented from fulfilling it by the opposition of his subjects, to give the Emperor two millions of ducats, besides fulfilling all other clauses and stipulations of the treaty. Should, however, Don Hugo see no disposition in His Holiness to depart from the demands and objections which he has made lately, rather than breaking with him—since the good issue of affairs, there as well as here, depends in a great measure upon his good understanding with the Emperor—he is to say: That with regard to his contribution in money [for the expenses of the late war], the Emperor is satisfied with the 150,000 offered in the first instance.
Respecting the Duke of Ferrara and the restitution of Rezo and Rubera (Reggio and Rubiera), should His Holiness object to the arrangement proposed in the instructions, Don Hugo is to say that the Emperor will not oppose any agreement that he (the Pope) may make with the said Duke, personally or by means of his agents; so that he may, without the Emperor's help or intervention, recover the above-mentioned Estates, and make for them and for the investiture of Ferrara such conditions and bargain as he thinks proper, the Emperor refraining from asking for any compensation in money, and promising, all the time, not to assist or help the said Duke or do anything to the Pope's detriment. Indeed, had it not been for the oath he took at his election to uphold everywhere the Imperial rights and privileges, the Emperor would willingly have consented to the article as in the first draft, worded by the Pope, and added by him to the intended treaty.
With regard to the Salt, the Emperor will do everything in his power to persuade the Infante (Archduke Ferdinand) to waive his right and do as His Holiness wishes.
Respecting Milan, which seems to be the principal difficulty, if Don Hugo, according to his instructions — which are sufficiently ample on this particular point—can persuade His Holiness to accept any of the expedients proposed, the Emperor is contented, and ready to sanction whichever of them is agreed upon. Should His Holiness, however, insist upon the reinstatement of the Duke Francesco Sforza, the Emperor consents to it, provided it be accomplished in the way of justice, and a satisfaction given to the Duke of Bourbon, to whom the said Duchy has been promised; so that until Sforza's trial be terminated and sentenced, he (Bourbon) receive for his maintenance 4,000 ducats monthly, or as much of that sum as can be had, from the rentals of that Estate. If, however, His Holiness should not agree to this last clause [about the money], Don Hugo is to waive it, and make such arrangements as may satisfy His Holiness, and give the Emperor a plausible excuse to make to Mons. de Bourbon.
In what concerns Naples and the ecclesiastical benefices—respecting which His Holiness wishes to abide by the words of the deed of investiture of that kingdom—Don Hugo is sufficiently empowered by his instructions to accede to the Pope's request on this particular.
With regard to the two marriages proposed, though Don Hugo has no power to consent to them without previous reference home, yet if it be found that His Holiness takes it much to heart, he is hereby empowered to grant the Emperor's consent to one or both of them, just as His Holiness may choose, on the best conditions that can be obtained, since the age of the parties being such that some time must elapse before the conclusion of the said matches, there is no harm in securing His Holiness' friendship by that means, so that he may afterwards induce the Venetians and other [Italian] potentates to conclude the defensive league [with the Emperor] and to pay their respective war contributions.
Should, however, His Holiness refuse to conclude, and try to put Don Hugo off by words or dilatory expedients; should it be suspected or otherwise understood that he (the Pope) is in treaty or has concluded any manner of stipulation with France; in that case Don Hugo is immediately to enter into negotiations with the Duke of Ferrara, with the Colonnese, the Siennese and others, as declared in the said instructions. In order the better to execute this, Hieronymo Severino has just been despatched back to Sienna, that he may keep the inhabitants faithful to the Emperor and dispose them, in case of invasion, to receive and maintain at their own cost any forces that may be detached from the Imperial army for their defence. The said Severino takes with him the confirmation of the privileges of the Siennese, as well as the draft of an obligation to be signed by the heads of that Signory, binding themselves to receive 100 men-at-arms and 2,000 foot, to pay them their usual stipend, or remit the money to the Imperial camp [at Milan], also to restore the emigrants (foraxidos) their property, as before their expulsion. Both the confirmation of their privileges and the obligation to be signed by the citizens, Severino is to deliver into Don Hugo's hands, that he may make proper use of both instruments. Should His Holiness allude to the late invasion of Hungary by the Turk, and the remedy to be applied thereto, suggesting that the Emperor ought to remit money to those parts, Don Hugo is to tell him that had His Holiness united himself with the Emperor in due time and granted him the Crusade so often and so earnestly demanded, there would probably have been no occasion for the present war, in which the whole of Christendom is likely to be engaged. As it is, and owing to His Holiness' dilatory behaviour and to the state of affairs both in Italy and in France, the Emperor cannot now, however much inclined he might otherwise be, take any decisive step in that matter, until the affairs with His Holiness be satisfactorily settled, when he (the Emperor) will not fail to employ his resources and his life for the defence of Christianity threatened by the Infidel.—Granada, 11 June 1526.
Since the above was written We have deemed it advisable to inform you, confidentially and in the most secret manner, that the agent of Cardinal Colonna now residing at this Court said to us, three days ago, that he had now a good chance of expelling the Pope from Rome and stirring up Sienna and even Florence and other fiefs of the Church against the Pope's authority. Wishing to delay our answer until the issue of your negotiation with the Pope should be known, We told him to wait; but the said agent insisted on a prompt decision, saying that his master the Cardinal wished to carry out his plans immediately; upon which We thanked the agent for the zeal his master showed in our service, and told him that you (Don Hugo) had full powers from us to act according to circumstances, and that We would inform you as secretly as possible of the Cardinal's offer, that you might, in case of need, communicate with his Reverence, and execute what might be considered best for our interests. We have no doubt that the agent has written to his master, and therefore you will, according to your instructions, gain time without resolving anything, until it be well ascertained whether His Holiness agrees to or rejects our offers, that being now the chief object of your mission, as well as the pivot of our negotiations with France. Should, however, the Pope reject our offers, and make impossible demands (cosas imposibles), or should you find out that he is only dallying in order to gain time and make his arrangements with other powers, in that case remember that he who strikes first strikes twice, and privately and with all secrecy induce the Cardinal to put his plan into execution as if it originated with himself.
Addressed: "Reverendo et Magnifico Priori, Consiliario nostro ac nostræ classis Maritimæ Capitaneo Generali, nostroque in Italia oratori."
Spanish. Copy. pp. 6.
13 June. 458. Gio. Matheo Giberti to the Bishop of Veroli [Ennio Filonardo].
Lettere di Principi,
Vol. I., f. 200.
Has received his three letters of the 7th, 8th and 9th, but they are so obscure (confuse) that he cannot understand their meaning; neither can His Holiness, to whom they have been shown. Had not he (the Bishop) announced, over and over again, that any number of men might be had from Switzerland, and, on the advance of one ducat per head, be led within ten days to the Venetian frontier; had he not placed excessive confidence, as he has done, in the promises of the Bishop of Lodi (Ottaviano Sforza), (fn. n2) and the Castellan of Mus (Gianiacomo de' Medici), other means might have been found to secure the aid of the Switzers. As it is, we are in great danger of not being able to succour the castle of Milan, which is our principal object and the basis of this present enterprise.
The Nuncio's orders in the first instance, and when the 10,000 ducats were remitted to him, were to help the operations of the Bishop of Lodi (Ottaviano Sforza) and Castellan of Mus, as it was expected at the time that His most Christian Majesty would shortly join the league. But the Nuncio was also desired to spend that money sparingly and wisely. Until he had a certainty of the league having been accepted in France, he was to help the aforesaid Bishop and Castellan in their undertaking secretly and without raising suspicion. He has since been ordered to suspend all proceedings until hearing from the Bishop of Bayeux or Monsignor di Pola that the league had actually been concluded, in which case he was to follow former instructions and declare himself openly (scoprirsi et spiegar le bandiere). Now the Nuncio writes to say that, in his opinion, the utmost caution and reserve ought to be used, as he doubts whether the league has been made. What is the meaning of this? Has not the Bishop of Bayeux (Canossa) and the Papal Nuncio at Venice (Monsignor di Pola), has not himself (the Datary) repeatedly written to him announcing this happy and to all of us important event? Blunders of this kind are scarcely credible in a person of the age, experience and discretion of the Papal Nuncio in Switzerland. Begs him to take his remonstrances in good part. Would not have spoken so freely had he not been his friend.—Rome, 13 June 1526.
Signed: "Gio. Mattheo Giberto."
Addressed: "Al Vescovo di Veruli."
13 June. 459. Alonso Sanchez, Imperial Ambassador in Venice, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
ff. 419–22.
In consequence of a letter from Don Ugo [de Moncada], dated Milan, the 5th inst, and another from His Imperial Majesty, ordering him to follow that ambassador's instructions, he (Sanchez) called upon the Signory on the 9th inst., delivered Don Ugo's letter, and explained the object of his mission and the general powers he had from His Imperial Majesty to treat and conclude all matters tending to ensure the peace of Italy and the welfare of the Christian world at large. He, at the same time, requested them to send to Rome an ambassador who might treat with Don Ugo, and inquire the meaning of certain military preparations in the territory of the Republic, about which he (Sanchez) had more than once remonstrated.
Their answer respecting this last point was, as on previous occasions, that if any preparations had been made it was rather to defend their country from invasion than to attack others. He (Sanchez) replied that Don Ugo's impression was a very different one; he thought, on the contrary, that the signs were those of invasion rather than defence of their own territory. Such, at least, was the rumour spread by the soldiers themselves. He (Sanchez) could not help telling the Signory that if their intention was to provoke war, it told sadly against their protestations and assurances so frequently given to Prothonotary Caracciolo and to himself, that they desired nothing but peace and union with His Imperial Majesty. They knew that the Imperial army had not molested them in the least; on the contrary, its commanders had sedulously removed any cause of complaint or even of suspicion. If their wish really was to live in peace with the Imperial army, as they had done hitherto, they must explain in a satisfactory manner the purpose of their military preparations, and openly declare their intentions, without which it was impossible for Don Hugo to fulfil his mission, which was solely to accomplish the pacification of Italy.
Told them, further, that both Prothonotary Caracciolo and Commander Herrera had called upon the Duke [of Milan] at the castle, and delivered to him a message from the Emperor, with which he (the Duke) had seemed contented. That Don Ugo was, in a couple of days, to leave for Rome, and see the Pope.
Their general answer was that they were very glad to hear of Don Ugo's arrival for such a purpose as the pacification of Italy and of the whole Christian world. They only wished he had come before; but, as it was, they would hold a meeting (pregha), discuss his proposals, and let him (Sanchez) know the result of their deliberations. They accordingly retired to a neighbouring chamber, and after some time sent for him (Sanchez), and repeated what they had said at first, adding, that, with regard to the ambassador's other inquiries, they had to consult the Council first; they would assemble it, and give an answer.
(Cipher:) It was not without intention that he (Sanchez) spoke to them about the Duke [of Milan] and the visit which both Caracciolo and Herrera had paid him; for had he not done so, these people, who are naturally suspicious (rezelosos), might have thought there was no chance of the Duke being included in the convention, or else that Don Ugo had brought with him what they most desire; namely, the Duke's complete absolution from guilt and consequent liberation. Either of these two things might, perhaps, have stayed their preparations for war, although he (Sanchez) is of opinion that Don Ugo has come too late; for, if the reports about this league be true, as he (Sanchez) has frequently written home, the Italian potentates will not be satisfied with the Duke Francesco's case being submitted to justice, from fear lest the judicial inquiry made into his culpability may help to reveal the guilt of others. Being already prepared for war, and the greater part of the cost incurred, they will no doubt prosecute their plans. Such, at least, is his (Sanchez') opinion in the matter, and he has written to Don Ugo about it.
(Common writing:) After the above conference, the Signory sent for the Pope's Legate (Bishop of Pola) and for the ambassadors of France (Bishop of Bayeux), England (Prothonotary Giovanni di Casale) and Milan (Taverna), to whom they communicated the contents of Don Ugo's letter and what he (Sanchez) had told them on the subject. Such is the ambassador's intelligence received through three different channels, (cipher) to which may be added that the French ambassador (Bishop of Bayeux) was not at all pleased with the result of the conference, intimating that although His Imperial Majesty might have resolved to leave the Duke Francesco [Sforza] in possession of his Estate, it was not to the King of France's advantage that he should remain in it otherwise than by his master hand; because His Imperial Majesty would be otherwise under the obligation of making restitution to the Duke's sons. (fn. n3)
The Signory has since held a pregha, and sent an express to the Pope at Rome in 34 hours, telling him not to listen to Don Ugo's proposals or come to any agreement with him, as they are sure of success. He (Sanchez) does not vouch for the truth of his intelligence; he only repeats what has been related to him.
(Common writing:) The Signory sent him one of their secretaries to say that in their last pregha they had not come to any decision about the answer to be made to his proposals; they would meet again on Monday, without fault, and give an answer on Tuesday. Sanchez made a suitable answer to the secretary.
(Cipher:) After this the above-mentioned ambassadors, viz., the Pope's, France, England and Milan, went together to the College Hall, and came out together, an evident sign that a league has been made by their respective masters, which cannot but be detrimental to the Imperial interests in Italy. He (Sanchez) has also heard that Cardinal Cortonna sent, the other day, an express to the Pope's Legate residing in this city, (fn. n4) begging him to inform this Signory that the Florentines had lately applied for admission into the league, and were ready to take up arms for the freedom of Italy.
He (Sanchez) has further been told—though he does not vouch for the truth of the report—that the late conferences of the said ambassadors with the Signory were for the sole purpose of discussing his own proposals in the Emperor's name. There were various opinions, not only among the ambassadors themselves, but among the councillors and senators, as to the answer to be returned. His informer also tells him that the King of France has not yet signed the treaty; that four only of the principal noblemen in the kingdom have appended their signatures to it, promising, however, that the King will sign it afterwards, the French ambassador having told the secretary to keep the matter secret.
Such is the information he (Sanchez) has been able to gather for the present; does not vouch for the truth, as his habit is not to certify facts unless he has witnessed them. His informer, however, is a man deserving of great trust; among other things he has told him which have turned out true, he has repeated to him word for word his own proposals to the Signory.
This Republic has given very strict orders to prevent money going out of their county. He (Sanchez) believes the order to have been issued purposely on his account, because, during the last war, he exported large sums for the use of the Imperial army.
Has been told that the Signory is secretly negotiating at Cremona. What the nature of the negotiation may be, and for what purpose, he (Sanchez) cannot guess, but he has given notice to Milan, that the generals of the Imperial army may be on their guard.
(Common writing:) This morning the Signory sent an answer to his address of the 9th. The substance of which is that they are glad to hear of Don Ugo's arrival in Italy and of the goodwill and inclination shown by His Imperial Majesty towards universal peace. Respecting other particulars, that as they are in perfect understanding and close union with His Holiness the Pope, with the most Christian King of France and with His Serene Highness the King of England, they cannot reply without first consulting every one of them, and ascertaining their wishes thereupon. All the said Princes, they maintain, are very well disposed towards universal peace; Christianity is in great danger if the Emperor and the rest do not come to an agreement,—and similar vague words to the same purpose. The ambassador replied that the proposal he had made in the Emperor's name treated of two different subjects. One was that they should send full powers to some person to treat with Don Ugo [at Rome]; the other to inquire what sort of relations they intended to carry on with this Imperial army. To the former of the two they had made some sort of answer, which he (Sanchez) would not fail to communicate to the Emperor and to Don Ugo; but to the latter they had made no reply whatever, and yet their army was so close upon ours that a conflict might soon ensue. On this point there was no time to consult the Kings of France and England, who had not hitherto made, to his knowledge, the military preparations he was complaining of. He therefore begged them to give him a categorical answer upon the subject.
Their reply was that they had no other answer to make; upon which the ambassador announced his intention to write to His Imperial Majesty and to other quarters where he was in duty bound to report. "To speak our mind freely (said they), regard ought to be had to these affairs of Milan, which keep the minds of all the Italian and other Princes in suspense." To which he (Sanchez) replied that he had so often declared to them the Emperor's intentions thereupon that he deemed it superfluous again to return to the subject; he would refer the matter to Don Ugo, who had full instructions from His Imperial Majesty. (fn. n5)
Such is, in substance, what passed between them; from which it may be concluded that the Signory is already in open league with the two above-said Princes.
(Cipher:) Has been told—though he does not vouch for the truth of the report—that the Signory has written to the secretary in France (Rosso) to do everything in his power to persuade that King to keep the Viceroy (Charles de Lannoy) so well amused that neither he nor Alarcon may soon come to Italy.
Many suspect that some galleys of this Republic are to join the Papal ones, and, if required, invade the coast of Naples. Anything is credible in view of the preparations they are making. They have always in this gulf from 15 to 20 galleys in perfect order, to guard their territory, as they say; but which may, with the greatest ease, receive orders to join those of the Pope. He (Sanchez) has heard that they have lately been ordered to Corfu, with larger crews than usual on board. Does not warrant the truth of the report; on the contrary, as far as he can judge, there is at present no sign of such armaments.
Whilst writing the above, he (Sanchez) has been told that the Signory have had letters, in date of the 3d inst., from their Secretary (Rosso) residing at the court of France, stating that the King was very decided and wished for war; he wanted it to be said that he had signed the treaty of league chiefly on account of certain movements of the Imperial army in Burgundy. (fn. n6) Does not warrant the truth of the last report; only repeats what he hears.
(Common writing:) As far as he can learn, the French King has not yet signed the treaty; he has only appended his signature to the agreement made between the Pope and this Signory, and added something to it (no sé que). Chiappino and Rosso have likewise signed, besides four French noblemen (grandes). The King, however, has promised to sign the whole as soon as the Pope and the Signory have done so. The treaty, it is added, has come back, and been returned to France for the King's signature.—Venice, 13 June 1526.
Signed: "Alonso Sanchez."
Addressed "To the most Sacred, Imperial, Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Venice. Alonso Sanchez, 13th of June."
Spanish. Original. Contemporary deciphering. pp. 10.
13 June. 460. Alonso Sanchez, Imperial Ambassador in Venice, to D. Lope de Soria at Genoa.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 419.
These few words are in answer to your Worship's letter of the 3d inst. There is no longer occasion to use our mutual cipher; for, this very morning, in reply to certain overtures which I made to the Signory, in compliance with Don Hugo's instructions and orders, they have owned to me that they are in close union and perfect understanding with His Holiness, with the most Christian King of France and with the most Serene Majesty of England; and therefore your Worship may consider the league about which I wrote on the 5th inst. as concluded.—Venice, 13 June 1526.
Signed: "Alonso Sanchez."
Spanish. Contemporary copy, enclosed in Soria's despatch of the same date. p. 1.
15 June. 461. Gio. Batt. Sanga to the Bishop of Pola, Papal Nuncio in Venice.
Lettere di Principi,
Vol. I., fol. 118. vo.
Don Ugo de Moncada is expected here every day. The Pope's answer is sure to be that he cannot accept the Emperor's offers of peace without first consulting his allies.—Rome, 15th of June 1526.
16 June. 462. Prothonotary Caracciolo, Imperial Ambassador in Venice, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 430.
Has not written since Commander Herrera's departure. On the 7th inst. By the advice of Don Ugo [de Moncada] and the rest of the Imperial generals, he (Caracciolo) waited upon the Duke of Milan at the castle, and inquired whether he would be willing to surrender that force into the hands of a third person, enjoying equally his and the Emperor's confidence, to be held in the name of both, pending his trial. Should he come out innocent, the castle to be restored to him; if, on the contrary, guilty, the Emperor to do as he pleased with it. Every hope, however, might be entertained of His Imperial Majesty's well-known clemency and forgiveness. He (Caracciolo) was the person designated by the Imperial generals, and, if accepted, would hold the castle of Milan, and take the required oaths, both to the Emperor and to the Duke. Cremona and its castle to be the Duke's residence whilst the inquiry lasted, but to be given up to the Emperor, as well as the castle of Milan, if the judicial decision told against the Duke. A long discussion ensued, during which the Duke at times seemed inclined to agree, and even inquired in what manner it was purposed to conduct him to Cremona in safety; whilst at other times he appeared very mistrustful and suspicious of the Imperial commanders, who (he said) had made him several promises which had never been fulfilled. His final answer was that being, as he was, besieged in his own castle, with so many of his nobles (gentilhuomini) and soldiers, who had not a "quatrino" at their disposal, and he himself more dead than alive, he had promised his faithful subjects and companions not to take any resolution whatever, or accept any terms, without first consulting them thereupon. He would ask their opinion on the matter and let the generals know next morning. Accordingly, on the 10th, two of his doctors (doctori) (fn. n7) came to our camp and said the Duke regretted his inability to accept his (Caracciolo's) proposals. He had nothing left in the world but the two castles (roche), that of Milan and that of Cremona, and his own person, an invalid. Considering the non-fulfilment (poca observatione) of the promises which the Imperial generals had made him from time to time, he (the Duke) could not be persuaded to surrender into their hands one of the two fortresses he still held; but if there was anything else he could do for the protection and security of the Imperial army, he (the Duke) was ready to do it. One of the above-mentioned doctors (doctori) has since returned, with a sort of written protest in the Duke's name, summoning Don Ugo to raise the siege of his castles, as he had been led to expect since his arrival at Milan, adding that if anything happened in consequence, detrimental to the Emperor's interests, he (the Duke) was in nowise responsible for it. Don Ugo left for Rome on the same day.
(Cipher:) In consequence of certain letters in cipher addressed to several citizens [of Milan] by the people inside the castle, lately intercepted and deciphered, of which copies are to be forwarded to Spain, the generals had announced their intention, before and after Don Ugo's departure, of taking precautionary measures, and arresting those who were in the conspiracy. This has naturally raised the suspicions of the guilty parties and others, who, fearing lest the arrest of the principal conspirators should be followed by similar measures, are doing all they possibly can to create disturbances in the city. They fancy that if the principal citizens are arrested, new taxes (taglioni) will be imposed upon them. This is the thing they hate most, openly proclaiming that they cannot bear their sufferings any longer, and that they are reduced to the very last extremity. The discontent is general, and several Spaniards and Germans have been privately assassinated in the streets during the last few days. As a precaution against such animosity, and in view of meeting the enemy, if required, the Imperial generals have brought to Milan some of the infantry; but such is the animosity displayed by Spaniards, and even Italians, against the gentlemen, the merchants and other worthy people in the place, that a catastrophe is imminent, and on the least provocation on the part of the rabble, the city of Milan will inevitably be sacked and destroyed. There are now in it a number of criminals (banniti et malfactori) from all parts of Italy, who wish for nothing short of having the city sacked by our troops, that they may have their share of the plunder. On the other hand, those of our soldiers who are quartered round Milan, hearing how their comrades are treated by the citizens, rob on the highways, and even slay all the country people (quelli della terra) they can find. These and similar excesses the Imperial generals cannot prevent, as the men receive no pay, and must procure food wherever they can find it. It is now the harvest season; and most of the peasants (villani) throughout the Duchy desert their villages and farms rather than submit to the pressing demands of the soldiery; and the consequence is that landed proprietors do not get their rents, and the richest men are left entirely without resources.
Commander Herrera must have already informed His Imperial Majesty of the state of affairs here. The army is certainly very efficient, but so undisciplined (licentiatissima) and so universally hated by the people, that should war break out, he (Caracciolo) believes there will be more to be feared from the Milanese than from the enemy himself.
The Pope and the Venetians are collecting forces on the frontiers of this Estate [of Milan]; yet he (Caracciolo) cannot make up his mind to believe that they will actually invade it without the assistance of France and of the Switzers. Of these last no news has been received to show that they are coming down soon. The Imperial generals, in the meantime, have fortified Cremona, and keep their eye on Pavia, as well as on Lodi and Alessandria. They will likewise look to Genoa, if required. If they only had money to move the army from one place to another, they would certainly repulse the enemy's forces on the frontiers.
(Common writing:) Will soon begin to execute the commission for which he came to Milan. Has done nothing yet, owing to bad health and pressing business of various kinds, such as conferences with members of the Municipal Corporation, rich merchants and other influential citizens, for the purpose of ensuring the tranquillity of this place and preventing reprisals on the part of the army, which has always been, and is still, the chief aim of the Imperial commanders.—Venice, 16 June 1526.
Signed: "El Protonotario Caracciolo."
Addressed: "Sacræ, Cæsareæ, Catholicæ Maiestati."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. Milan. Prothonotary Caracciolo, 22 (sic) of June. Answered."
Italian. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 9.
17 June. 463. Jean Jonglet, Seigneur Des Maretz, to Madame.
K. u. K. Haus-
Hof- u. Staats Arch.
Wien. Rep. P. C.
Fasc. 224. No. 3.
Last Sunday, the 17th inst., he (Jonglet), in compliance with orders received on the 9th, presented his letters and credentials to the King. Could not do the same with those addressed to the Legate, who, being about to leave [London] for Windsor, the King's actual residence, desired him to communicate with Maistre More, the Chancellor, anything he had to say, which he (Jonglet) did accordingly, after the Cardinal's departure for that castle.
Perceives that neither Madame's letters—though honourable and gracious in themselves—nor the excuses and representations he (Jonglet) has made in her name have given satisfaction. The King still persists in his idea that the Emperor, since the victory [of Pavia], is becoming daily more and more reserved and distant (estrange), since he takes no trouble to communicate either with him or with his ambassadors [in Spain], as most Kings are in the habit of doing when closely allied and connected with each other. He (the Emperor) had delayed five or six months sending ambassadors to treat and discuss their affairs in common; most likely with a view to ascertain in the meanwhile, how his own negotiations with the King of France would end, and shape his conduct accordingly, a manner of proceeding which was anything but friendly or polite. The King, in fact, seemed to regret this most particularly, adding that his own behaviour towards the Emperor and towards Madame had been very different. He had always shown them friendship, and it would not be his fault if their mutual relations came to be changed. Many other similar things did the King say to show his discontent, in the very presence of some of his councillors, who were so close by that they could overhear every word of the conversation.
His (Jonglet's) private opinion is—under correction—that Madame ought, in her letter [to the King], to have made excuses for the delay of the Imperial ambassador, and met the King's grievances (doleances) on that score, helping to confirm what he (Jonglet) had already told him on the subject Madame, however, after consulting her Council, decided that this should form part of his credentials; and therefore he (Jonglet) had to get out of it as well as he could.
Has begged the King not to take things in that light, assuring him that the victory gained over their common enemy had in nowise changed the Emperor's mind, who is as constant as ever he was in his friendship and affection towards him. The proof of this was that on the receipt of that happy intelligence the first thing he did was to praise God, the dispenser of all mercies. Far from becoming arrogant, he had shown clemency and regard towards his vanquished foe, as his gracious treatment of the French King could sufficiently prove.
With regard to the King's complaint that the Emperor had not thought proper to communicate his affairs to him, Jonglet replied that the Emperor, in treating with the French King, had, it is true, attended to his own private interests, but without disregarding those of his ally, the King of England, or stipulating anything to his detriment, since it had been agreed between him and the King of France that the whole of the indemnity which the King of England claimed in virtue of his own private treaty with France—of which, however, neither the Emperor nor Madame had been informed—should be made over to him.
Respecting the delay of the ambassadors, Jonglet begged the King to consider the very important and pressing business the Emperor had in hand just now; it was occasioned, not indeed by the causes the King had pointed out, but out of the Emperor's wish to select a fit and wise person to represent him [in England]. In short, he hoped the Emperor would soon appoint one to the King's satisfaction.
After declaring that his only wish was to promote the Emperor's welfare and prosperity, the King concluded by remarking: "The Emperor's Council [of State] might well have considered that it was not in the power of the King of France to promise or take engagements, as he had done in the last treaty. It would have been wiser for the Emperor to make a less demand and require greater security;" and he went on saying many things to the same purpose.
In answer to which objections, the ambassador observed, as he has done on other occasions, that it was no new thing for the Kings of France to alienate part of their territory, as King Jean [Sans Terre] did when prisoner in England. By the present treaty the King was not compelled to give his own, but only to restore what did not belong to him, and this he had most solemnly promised and sworn to do. It was not honourable to induce him to break his faith.
With regard to the currency (le fayt des monnoyes), the King observed that we of the Low Countries were bound by treaties to make some provision immediately. No such excuses as the one once alleged of the disorderly state of French finances could at present be admitted, much less that of waiting for the issue of the affairs pending between the Emperor and the French King, for (said he) all those causes no longer exist; and, besides, it has already been settled by formal acts and treaties that no value is to be fixed on coin in the Low Countries unless by the express consent of England, for, were that tolerated, all the gold would go out of this country.
To this the ambassador made a suitable reply, adding that the King might very well, if he chose, forbid his subjects from bringing angelots into the Low Countries, or if our own people sent to England for them forbid their exportation. The King objected to this, saying that such a process would interfere with the mercantile speculations of his subjects, and that he was not disposed to adopt such a measure; it was for us to make a reform, according to the stipulations of the treaties. On his (Jonglet's) remark that the merchants of Calais were in the habit of receiving payment for their wools according to the tables of their Staple, which went up or down according to the price current, he, the King, denied the fact altogether.
No mention whatever is made in Madame's letter of the refusal by the merchants of Bruges to admit woollen stuffs from England, which has caused great annoyance to these merchants, who assert that it is contrary to the treaties [of commerce] between the two countries, and that the sale of their woollen stuffs has always been tolerated in Flanders. They maintain that the prohibition—if there was any in old times—only extended to wide cloth and others (aux larges et autres draps) not to the thick and small (gros et petits draps); and that although no distinction is made between large or small in the wording of the treaty, yet tolerance and custom are equivalent to an exception, and the doubt ought to be interpreted in their favour. He (Jonglet) is not thoroughly acquainted with the ins and outs of this affair, not having been written to thereupon or received instructions from home. Yet he has discussed the matter to the best of his abilities.
With regard to the ill-treatment of Englishmen in the Low Countries, the King perseveres in his idea, although the ambassador has taken every opportunity to contradict the rumour, begging him to specify the cases and name the individuals who had received injuries, in order to have their wrongs redressed and the culprits punished, adding that our own countrymen were much worse treated in England than the English were in the Low Countries, and begging for redress to this grievance. To which the King answered that he was not aware of the fact; he would have the affair looked into, and if he found that our countrymen had anything to complain of, he would have their wrongs redressed. The ambassador then observed that the commercial intercourse between two friendly nations ought not to suffer on account of the slight quarrels which often arise between neighbours. The King owned the truth of the ambassador's observation, and said: "You are right there, but nevertheless the whole of this wants a radical reform." In short, the King offered to write to Jehan Hacquet (Sir John Hackett) to wait on Madame and explain his views on the subject. Such is the substance of his conference with the King. Wishes things were in a better state than they are.
After taking leave of the King—who ordered every attention to be paid to him—the ambassador had occasion to converse with various honourable and noble personages (bons et grands personnaiges), who assured him that the Legate, in particular, was exceedingly annoyed at seeing the Emperor estranging himself (s'estrangeoit) from him, and treating him very differently from what he used to do once. The Emperor (he said) must have been misinformed on his account. He was sure that he had done good service on all occasions, and would continue doing so, if it only rested with him (se en luy estoit). His pensions are not regularly paid, and great arrears are due to him. He has influence and power, and can do much service.
To the above remarks, he (Jonglet) merely replied: He was not aware that the Emperor mistrusted the Legate. Since the ambassador's residence in England he had written to him in his own hand. Madame knows full well what authority and influence the Cardinal enjoys in this country, and how much he can do for or against the Emperor. Considers it his duty to write as he does in plain terms, that Madame may find out whence the discontent of both the King and Legate really originates, as it might, in the end, if not attended to, be the cause of great evil. Has frequently pointed out in his despatches the state of the Emperor's affairs in England. They get worse and worse every day.
The ambassadors of France, Rome, Venice and other Italian powers meet almost daily to discuss their own affairs in secret, and he (Jonglet) is left entirely alone and isolated (comme chose habandonnée). There is no manner of annoyance to which he is not subjected, not only as regards small matters, but in all those which directly concern the Emperor. May God give him good counsel to get out of the present difficulties, with Madame's good advice! (fn. n8)
Insists upon his recall and the appointment of a proper person to conduct so intricate and perplexing a negotiation, as he once more confesses himself unfit for the task.—London, 17 June 1526.
Signed: "Jonglet."
P.S,.—Has since received Madame's letter, stating that as soon as the Emperor has appointed a fit person to represent him at the English court, he (Jonglet) will get his recall. Thanks Madame for her kindness; but cannot help thinking that the non-arrival of the Imperial ambassador is no reason for keeping him at a Court where he can be of no use whatever. Madame might send another person to represent her and wait for the Emperor's ambassador. More than six months ago he was promised his recall, and yet has remained at his post, only to please Madame, notwithstanding his old age, the bad state of his health and the continual danger of catching the plague, besides his complete inability to carry on business and manage such a difficult and highly perplexing negotiation to the honour and profit of the Emperor and Madame. Surely there are at Court several young Councillors full of activity and zeal, and well versed in these affairs, to whom his charge might be intrusted. Has served for upwards of 20 years; it is time for others to serve in their turn. When he was sent [to England], he was told expressly that his mission would only last three or four months. Has now been nearly a year. The merchants here receive letters from Spain almost every day, and yet no mention is made in them of the Emperor having appointed an ambassador to this Court. Believes the King of England will not be angry if he (Jonglet) is replaced by another ambassador from the Low Countries.
Signed: "Jonglet."
Addressed: "To Madame la Gouvernante des Pays-Bas."
French. Original. pp. 5.
18 June. 464. Simon de Tassis, Postmaster General, to Lope de Soria, Imperial Ambassador in Genoa.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 442.
For some time past the criminals of this city, joined by the partisans of the Sforza (Sforschescaria), have held meetings and assemblies together for the purpose of rising in arms against the Imperial authority. Upwards of 500 of them went out the other day to join the warder of Mus, a castle still holding with the Duke Francesco. The Imperial generals did not oppose their march, thinking that the absence of such people from this city would afford a better chance for its pacification. But no sooner had they started than they began plundering and slaying all the Imperialists they met on the roads leading to Milan, and hoisted two black banners similar to those used in this last war against the Emperor. (fn. n9) The generals and agents of His Imperial Majesty, though inclined to mercy, demanded from the authorities of this city the prompt chastisement of such rebellious acts and the expulsion of about 90 citizens suspected of being at the head of the conspiracy. The evil, however, grew to such a pitch that, in two days, no less than 150 Imperialists—either soldiers or merchants, Spaniards and Germans, and, in fact, every foreigner in the place—were assassinated in the suburbs and also in the principal streets; among the rest, two postmen of mine, one of whom, a Florentine lately arrived from Lyons, was slain in the market-place.
To avoid the just reprisals of our men, who were ready to sack the city, the generals sent for the Vice-Governor (Vicario), and it was agreed that a guard of citizens should be appointed to preserve peace in the city. Three hundred were chosen, and the command given to one Pietro da Purterla and to another citizen named Micer Ludovicho da Chiecher (?); but, instead of improving, matters grew worse; for on the 16th inst., at the 22 hours, as the generals with their escort were walking the streets, one of the criminals (scelerati) was arrested, who began to cry at the top of his voice: "Citizens: To arms! To arms!" upon which the people rose everywhere and attacked the posts occupied by our soldiers. The generals then sent a trumpeter to the Vice-Governor (Vicario), announcing that unless the rebels immediately laid down their arms, they would send for the troops encamped outside the gates. An agreement was then made that all suspected persons should be sent away, and that the infantry, who had received orders to enter Milan, should be sent back to a distance of about 8 miles. Notwithstanding which, the Milanese again rose in arms, took possession of the Duomo and of the Royal Palace (Corte Regia), and slew 70 of our soldiers, who were attacked singly and unawares. Seeing which, the generals decided to send for 1,000 Spaniards and about 600 cavalry from the camp, with whose help tranquillity was soon restored, many of the rebels being slain or made prisoners, and the rest taking to flight. It is to be hoped that no further provocation will be offered and that the Milanese will continue quiet.—Milan, 18th June 1526.
Signed: "Simon de Tassis."
Addressed: "News from Milan."
Italian. Holograph. pp. 3½.
18 June. 465. The Marquis del Guasto and Antonio de Leyva to D. Lope de Soria, Imperial Ambassador in Genoa.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 450.
Your Worship has already been informed of the hostile movements of this city against us. They have continued, and so increased of late, that yesterday and the day before the Milanese slew some of our men inside, as well as outside, the city walls. They have kept us two whole days under arms, the bells ringing, &c.; and we have, in consequence, sent for the greater part of the Imperial army which has been quartered at the Burgo (suburb). No sooner did the people hear of it, than they came up to us asking for mercy, and saying that the rising was no work of theirs, and had not been either promoted or encouraged by the honourable citizens or governors of Milan; upon which, and considering that the destruction of this city would not be agreeable to His Imperial Majesty, we abstained from any violence, and contented ourselves with demanding that Pietro di Purterla, the avowed chief of this insurrection, and about 100 more whose names we gave them, should be instantly expelled from the city. This having been done, we are about to proceed to the disarmament of the city and to the punishment of those concerned in these riots, so that, with God's help, we shall keep the city in obedience to the Emperor. We inform your Worship of this, that you may be acquainted with the state of things.—Milan, 18 June 1526.
P.D,.—From Switzerland we have no news. Merchants' letters from France state that the Emperor and the King of France had come to an agreement, and that the latter had given up Burgundy. Others assert that he has not; which of the two reports be true we cannot tell.
The Venetians have sent to Verona 1,000 infantry, for fear of an invasion and to defend the passes against Archduke Ferdinand.
Spanish. Copy. p. 1½.
20 (?) June. 466. Draft of Agreement made at Rome between Pope Clement VII. and the Imperial Ambassadors, Duke of Sessa and Don Ugo de Moncada.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
f. 23.
The Duke's case to be decided by such judges as His Holiness, on one side, and the Emperor's agents, on the other, shall nominate and appoint. The Duke, in the meantime, to deliver over his castle [of Milan] to Prothonotary Caracciolo, who will put in it a sufficient garrison for its defence. The siege to be raised, and the Imperial army to go out of the city, where the Duke may stay or go about freely, as in former times. The said Prothonotary to take his oath (pleito homenage) that in the event of the Duke Francesco Sforza being absolved from the crime "læsæ Majestatis" imputed to him, to the full approbation (voluntad) of His Holiness and of His Imperial Majesty, he (the Duke) shall be reinstated in the possession of the said castle, without further impediment, the [Italian] League being bound to maintain him in his rights. Should the Duke be condemned to deprivation of honours and estates, the League to remain under the same obligation and bond for the benefit of the Sacred [Roman] Empire, or of the person on whom by common consent of the Pope and Emperor the said fief may devolve, the aforesaid Prothonotary engaging to deliver the castle of Milan to the person so appointed, after His Holiness has received the assurance (certificando) that neither His Imperial Majesty nor his brother, the Archduke Ferdinand, intends to keep the said castle for himself.
With regard to other points of minor importance in the treaty, as well as the evacuation of Lombardy by the Imperial troops, and the countries or districts whereat they are to fix their quarters, those are secondary questions, to be settled in the negotiation with His Holiness.—(No signatures or date.) (fn. n10)
Indorsed: "Agreement made between His Holiness, Don Hugo and the Duke of Sessa for the giving up of the Castle of Milan."
Spanish. Copy. p. 1½.
20 June. 467. Lope de Soria, Imperial Ambassador in Genoa, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 37,
f. 448.
Has received letters from Milan, of the 18th, with an account of the tumultuary rising in that city. It was a miracle that we did not fare worse. Upon the whole, this riot (alboroto), like the preceding ones, is likely to be beneficial to the Imperial army; for the rioters are completely put down, the Milanese punished and the ringleaders sent out of the city; besides which, everyone will now be more vigilant and prepared for an emergency.
Encloses copy of letters from Alonso Sanchez, of the 13th, and from the Duke of Sessa, of the 11th. Andrea Doria has left Civittà Vecchia, and sailed towards the Piombino channel. He has with him, besides his own galleys, three more of the Order of St. John; and gives out that he will shortly pay us a visit here. At Piacenza the Papal forces are daily increasing. A bridge is being thrown over the river Pò; but he (Soria) thinks that neither will the Papal troops dare to cross that river, nor the Venetians the Adda, unless they have in their company a large body of Switzers; and the truth is that, up to the present moment, there is no sign of their stirring.
(Cipher:) Hears that the Pope is negotiating with the Duke of Ferrara, though they are yet far from being agreed. Cardinal Pisano conducts the negotiation. It would be highly advantageous for His Imperial Majesty to have the Duke on his side, and show him favour, so that he and the Bentiurlas (fn. n11) might, in case of need, invade the estates of the Church. Fancies that with the Emperor's favour and support, the Duke of Ferrara, as well as the above-mentioned family and many others, would gladly accept the task of making war on the Pope. Any injury that can be inflicted upon the latter he well deserves for his ungrateful behaviour towards the Emperor and his little regard for the service of God and welfare of the Christian community. And since it appertains to His Imperial Majesty alone to punish a Pontiff who, like the present, fails in his duty towards God and man, and the Emperor has the power and so many means at his command to do this, it seems as if the present opportunity should not be allowed to pass without depriving him of the allegiance of all the Emperor's subjects and vassals, and turning them all against him. God's service and the welfare of Christendom might thus be ensured; and this might become, in future times, a lesson to those who, under cover of the Pontifical authority, might presume, as the present Pope is doing, to usurp temporal power and make levies of men wherewith to deprive Emperors of their estates and slaughter their subjects, actuated, as the present Pope has been, by such sinful hatred. (fn. n12)
(Common writing:) Begs to be forgiven if his zeal for the Imperial service has carried him too far in his appreciation of the Pope's conduct on this occasion. But such are his opinions; he cannot disguise them.—Genoa, 20 June 1526.
Signed: "Lope de Soria."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imperial and Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. Lope de Soria, 20 June. Answered."
Spanish. Original mostly in cipher. No deciphering appended. pp. 3½.


  • n1. The answer is not appended, nor have the instructions here referred to been found at Vienna, Brussels or Simancas. Enough, however, may be gathered from the contents of this letter, as well as from the correspondence of Dou Hugo himself and of the Duke of Sessa, which will be abstracted hereafter.
  • n2. Count Gerardo dell' Archo was governor of the castle of Mus or Musso in January 1525, as appears from a letter of the Abbot of Najera to the Emperor, abstracted by Bergenroth, Calendar, &c., vol. II., p. 694; but at this time Gianiacopo de' Medici was in command of the place, as related by Guicciardini Istoria d'Italia, lib. XVII. The fact is confirmed by F. Leandro Alberti in his Descrittione di tutta d'Italia, 1577, 4to., fol. 420, vo. "Scorgesi poi sopra l'alto et aspro monte Musso tanto nominato ne' nostri giorni, per l'opere fatte da Giovan Giacomo de' Medici Milanese; il quale essendo quiui mandato da Francesco Sforza II. Duca di Milano per guardia del Lago, sene inseguori d'esso et dopo molte prode opere fatte da lui, fu creato Marchese di detto castello da Antonio da Leva."
  • n3. "Al embaxador de Francia no le plugo diciendo que aunque V. Magd quiera dexar al Duque en el estado que no cumplia á su Rey que el Duque quedase sino por su mano, porque de esta manera era poner á V. M. en necesidad de restituir á sus hijos." The passage is rather ambiguous, as the Duke had no sons at the time; but Count Ludovico di Canossa (for such was the Bishop's name), meant, probably, that in case of the Duke Francesco's death, his estate would pass to his posterity, and not to Maximiliano Sforza, who was the French candidate.
  • n4. Altobello Averoldi, Bishop of Pola, already mentioned in previous letters.
  • n5. On the 14th of June the Doge and College wrote to Gasparo Spinelli, Venetian Secretary in England, enclosing a summary of their conference with Sanchez, and answer made to his overtures. It differs considerably from the Imperial ambassador's statement. See Rawdon Brown, Venet. State Pap., vol. III., p. 568.
  • n6. "Dice que el Rey estaba may bravo y que queria guerra, y que se dixese que él habia firmado la capitulacion por que en Borgoña por los de V. Mag. se habia hecho no sé que movimiento."
  • n7. Giacomo Philippo Sacco, senator, and Giovanni Baptista Speziano, treasurer. See the Duke's own letter to Cardinal Wolsey, giving an account of this interview, in Brewer, Letters and Papers, &c., vol. IV., Part I., p. 1000.
  • n8. "Je prie Dieu quil lui donne si bon conseil qu'il sache bien remedier et pourveoir à tout comme j'espere qu'il fera par vostre bon adviz."
  • n9. "Et tolseno doi banderi negri con li armi sforzeschi." Probably the celebrated bandenere of the Florentines.
  • n10. Don Ugo de Moncada left Milan for Rome on the 8th of June. He did not arrive in that city before the 16th, for, on the day before the 15th, Giovanni Battista Sanga wrote to the Bishop of Pola (Altovello Averoldi), that he was hourly expected. Between that day and the 24th of June, when he and Sessa quitted Rome, the aforesaid agreement, if it was one, must have been drawn out. A letter of the English ambassador at Rome, Prothonotary John Casal, or Giovanni di Casale, in date of the 23d, abstracted by Rawdon Brown (Venet. State Papers, vol. III., p. 572), favours the above conjecture. The Duke's letter of the 24th, giving an account of this and Don Ugo's negotiations with the Pope, seems to have been intercepted.
  • n11. Thus in the original, the deciphering of which is not in the volume. I know of no Italian family of this name; and therefore the Bentivoglio, or perhaps the Colonna, must be meant. Both families were at this time in open hostility to Pope Clement. The former had resided at Ferrara ever since the taking of Bologna by Pope Julius II., who deprived them of their estates. The latter were in open rupture with Clement, and had actually joined their forces to those of Don Ugo de Moncada.
  • n12. "Mucho convendria al servicio de V. Magd. tener al Duque de Ferrara por servidor y favorecerle para que él y los Bentiurlas? hiciessen guerra al Papa; y con el favor de V. Magd pienso que la harian de buena voluntad y otros muchos con ellos, y todo el daño que V. Magd pueda hazer á Su Santidad parece que será licito hacer, considerada su ingratitud y el poco respeto que tiene al servicio de Dios y bien de los Cristianos; y pues á solo V. Mag. toca castigar el Pontifice, que no hace lo que debe, y tiene tantas maneras y poder para facerlo, no debe dejar V. Magd de evitarle toda obediencia de sus reynos y señorios y convocar todos sus vasallos contra él, pues haciendolo de esta suerte seria servicio de Dios y bien de todos los Cristianos y exemplo para que no presumiendo de Pontifices usurpen el autoridad á los Emperadores, ni fagan levas para quitarles los estados y degollarles sus vasallos, maximè con tan inicuo odio como este amuestra proceder contra todo esto." There being no deciphering appended to this letter, this paragraph and others have been deciphered by the editor. If made at the time, it is natural to conclude, from its import, that it was not submitted to the Emperor