Spain: July 1526, 1-10

Pages 779-797

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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July 1526, 1-10

3 July. 475. Secretary Juan Perez (fn. n1) to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
ff. 1–2.
On the 24th of June the Duke of Sessa and Don Ugo de Moncada wrote, by way of Porto Ercole, by a passenger in a galleon bound for Barcelona. The duplicate was sent to Milan, thence to be forwarded to Genoa. Hopes both have been delivered. (fn. n2)
Soon after Don Ugo left for Ginençano, where he was to be met by Cardinal Coluna (Colonna), Vespasiano, and Ascanio [Colonna]. Before his departure [from Rome] Don Ugo had a long audience with the Pope, and made him such offers as would have been quite sufficient under other circumstances, but the Pope said to him, that although they seemed acceptable, he could do nothing in the matter without the advice of his confederates. The Duke left yesterday for Marino. He sent in advance some infantry, Spanish, as well as German, and some few Italians. He himself followed with the rest of his escort and some cavalry, after obtaining the Pope's permission, which was granted with difficulty.
(Cipher:) All the Imperialists here feel his absence very much. The Germans who accompany him are exceedingly displeased with the Pope, and take up the quarrel as if it were their own (como cosa propia), and are consequently marching with great alacrity and in high spirits to the field of war.
What will be the result of the meeting of the Colonnese with Don Ugo he (Perez) cannot say, but the Pope is attending to the defence of his estates, and is exceedingly angry at some of the Colonnese who reside at Nania (Anania) having risen against the Orsino and taken possession of that place. Here at Rome military preparations are being made, and the Pope has already upwards of 2,000 infantry and some horse. It is also reported that His Holiness is about to march a large body of troops on Sienna. Yesterday, just as the Duke was leaving the city, he was told that Don Ugo had posted for Naples.
His Imperial Majesty, no doubt, knows already how on St. John's festival, before daybreak, the Papal troops and the Venetians took possession of Lodi by treason, which brilliant feat of arms has considerably raised the spirits of those who are no friends to the Empire. They have since spread a thousand rumours, more or less alarming, viz., that the Marquis del Guasto had made two vain attempts to recover the place; that the Duke of Urbino had approached Milan, but had been worsted by our troops; that the French King had joined the League, and had it proclaimed in his dominions, and so forth. As all this news, however, only came in letters from our enemies, not much faith is to be attached to them.
Advices from Genoa, of the 28th June, state that the bills of exchange for 100,000 ducats had been duly paid, and that other bills for double that amount were soon expected for Germany. Bourbon's arrival at Genoa (cipher) with 5,000 infantry had also given great satisfaction, for with such a succour at the present time we shall be able to treat these people as they deserve, and prevent their carrying their plans into execution.
(Common writing:) On St. Peter's day the tribute (hacanea) was presented as usual to the Pope, though under protest that the 7,000 ducats which Naples annually pays on such occasion could not be delivered, owing to the Pope having expressly forbidden all Roman bankers to discount bills drawn by subjects of the Empire. The Pope, however, was willing to accept the tribute (hacanea) and the ducats also, and offered to withdraw the prohibition that we might procure the money from the banks. He (Secretary Perez) was debating the matter in the Pope's presence, when one of his procurators (fiscales) came in with a new protest. A copy was immediately applied for, but up to the time when this letter is sealed and entrusted to the master of a Portuguese galleon it has not been received.
Remains at Rome by order of the Duke and Don Ugo, but as the palace where the embassy resides belongs to the Pope, and he (Perez) has since received summons to quit, he will soon be obliged to change his quarters. Asks for an increase of salary and payment of arrears in consequence.
The Portuguese ambassador in Rome has offered his services. He ought to be written to, as well as some cardinals, such as Campeggio, Tortosa and Cesarini, although this latter is now absent from Rome, and gone to a place of which he is governor. Some believe that he (Cesarini) went away when he saw the turn affairs are taking here; others assert that he left merely to escape from the plague, which is rather strong just now.—Romo, 3rd July 1526.
Signed: "Juan Perez."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imperial, Catholic Majesty. Duplicate of the 3rd July."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Rome. From the Duke of Sessa, (fn. n3) 3rd of July."
Spanish. Holograph partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 3.
4 July. 476. Ascanio Colonna to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
f. 376.
The league is no longer a secret. Encloses the numbers of the enemy, and their preparations by sea and land. Their intention is to invade Lombardy, to attack also Genoa, Naples, and Sienna. They proclaim that the King of France is with them, and will shortly invade Spain by the Pyrenees.
The Duke of Sessa, Don Ugo [de Moncada], Vespasiano, he (Ascanio Colonna), and the rest of the Colonnese have been considering what they had better do for the Imperial service. Begs that provisions for Germany and Italy be not delayed. Refers for the rest to his letter to the Grand Chancellor (Mercurino Gattinara) and to Marcello, his own agent at court
Addressed: "To His Imperial Majesty."
Indorsed: "Relacion de cartas de los Coluneses."
Spanish. Copy. pp. 2.
7 July. 477. Alonso Sanchez, Imperial Ambassador in Venice, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
ff. 6–11.
(Cipher:) No wonder that he (Sanchez) cannot write as often as he should and as he used to do; all the Emperor's servants in Italy find the ways closed to them (todos los campos estan cerrados para nosotros).
(Common writing:) The Signory sent him one of their secretaries to request he would attend the solemnity about to take place for the promulgation of the league, which they said, far from being against His Imperial Majesty, reserved for him a very honourable place, and was intended for the common benefit of parties, and to ensure universal peace. His answer was that whenever leagues of the sort were made between Christian Princes for their common advantage, it was customary not to leave out any of them. His Imperial Majesty had not, to his own knowledge, been consulted or included in it. On the contrary, he (Sanchez) had heard that both the Duke of Sessa and Don Ugo de Moncada had quitted Rome. The Signory must excuse him if he did not accept their invitation, for notwithstanding their declaration their deeds showed that the confederacy was exclusively intended against his master. (fn. n4)
(Cipher:) Malatesta Ballon (Baglione), a captain in the service of this Signory, (fn. n5) managed the other day, as His Imperial Majesty has no doubt heard, to enter Lodi by previous concert with the inhabitants, for which feat of arms the said Baglione has been rewarded with the post of general of their infantry. He (Sanchez) had long before written to Milan to warn the generals against any attempts of the said Malatesta, but he was told that Lodi was sufficiently provided for, and that there was nothing to fear.
Has no certain news from the Imperial camp or from that of the Pope and Venetians, and therefore will abstain from communicating intelligence that might turn out untrue. Has no letters from those parts, and those he himself writes are intercepted by the Signory. From Genoa and Milan His Imperial Majesty has no doubt more direct information. All he can say is that the reports at Venice are rather unfavourable. Notwithstanding their declarations that the war is not against the Emperor, but made only for the protection of the Duke Francesco Sforza, with whom they are confederated, it is quite evident that they are doing all they possibly can against us. Not satisfied with the order they gave some time ago that no money should go out of their country, they have lately enjoined all merchants not to pay bills unless the Signory's officers are previously acquainted with the names of the persons by whom they are drawn. His Imperial Majesty recollects no doubt that in October last he (Sanchez) procured 6,000 ducats for the Marquis of Pescara's army, which sum was repaid to him in February in merchants' bills upon Venice, payable in June. The banker on whom the bills were drawn paid down two thousand and odd ducats on account, but no sooner did the Signory hear of the transaction than they stopped the payment of the remainder. In vain did he (Sanchez) allege that the bills were drawn in February; that the money was his own and had been lent to the Marquis that there was no even plausible reason for laying an embargo on his own private property, when that of ambassadors was everywhere respected, and that of the Venetian subjects in Spain had not been sequestered; that the sum was destined to the payment of the debts he (Sanchez) had in Venice and to his own support until he received funds from Spain. All his remonstrances have been in vain, and after eight days' expostulation he is as far advanced as at first. Indeed, he has altogether been treated by them in a manner so humiliating to an ambassador of His Imperial Majesty that he would already have quitted Venice had he not feared to add to the present complications. Has written to the Duke of Sessa and to Don Ugo about it, but has received no answer. Had any of them given him permission to go, he should certainly have quitted Venice rather than submit to such indignities. True it is that the Duke wrote to him on the 30th of June, the day before he left Rome, announcing his departure for Spain, and that D. Ugo also had left to hold an interview with the Colonnese; that Secretary Perez remained at Rome in his room, and that he (Sanchez) might, if he chose, after appointing a proper person to fill his place and report news, quit Venice and repair to the Archduke's court, where he could apply for the help he had promised to send. But he (Sanchez) was prevented from following this advice for two very potent reasons. Firstly, the want of a trusty and properly qualified person with whom to entrust the affairs of his embassy, as the Duke and Don Ugo had done at Rome; and secondly, the great distance of the place whereat the Archduke now holds his court, which is so far away that it would require riding post for twenty consecutive days to reach it, a sort of fatigue which neither his health nor his age will allow him to bear at this season of the year, besides the probability of the Archduke being already on his way to Italy before he (Sanchez) had time even to procure horses. Has again written consulting the Duke and D. Ugo. Should either of them recommend his departure, he will certainly leave Venice immediately, for which purpose he is already making the necessary preparations quietly and without demonstration.
Has no news whatever from the Infante (Archduke Ferdinand). Although he has frequently written to His Highness pressing him to come down with as numerous a body of troops as he can muster, he (Sanchez) has never had an answer, though he has no doubt that his letters, directed as they are, and with such precautions as he uses, must reach him. Has written again lately, wishing to know what he (Sanchez) and the Archduke's ambassador here at Venice are to do under the present circumstances. Fears that His Highness's answers have been intercepted. Has no positive information of what the Archduke's plans may be. Hears that he is still at Spora (Spires) presiding over the Diet. The captain of Trent writes in date of the 1st instant to the Archducal ambassador here, that the bishop of that place had sent orders to prepare rooms for the Archduke, who was shortly to come down at the head of considerable forces. No more is known at Venice of the Archduke's movements.
The Bishop of Bayus (Bayeux), ambassador of France, went to Ferrara some days ago, and has since returned. His visit is said to have been unsuccessful. What the object of it was he (Sanchez) cannot say, except that this Signory are trying all they can to bring him (the Duke) to their side.
The Switzers have not yet answered the call made on them, at which the Pope and Venetians are greatly disappointed. The report is that 500 lances are coming here from France, besides the Milanese emigrants (foraxidos) under the command of Renzo da Ceri. The Venetian Proveditor at sea (Alvise Darmer) sailed four or five days ago for Corfú, where he is to take 14 galleys of this Republic, and then join the Papal ones under Andrea Doria. It is rumoured also that a large French fleet, the command of which is to be given to Pedro Navarro, is to join the above-mentioned sea forces, and that they are constantly menacing Naples and Sicily. He (Sanchez) wrote many days ago to the authorities of both kingdoms, warning them of the impending danger, and bidding them be prepared against any invasion of the enemy.
These people are making great preparations for to-morrow's pageant, when the league is to be proclaimed with great solemnity. He (Sanchez) believes that they will include in it the King of England, and that the ambassador (Prothonotary Casale), who is an Italian and a good Christian, will do all he can and make every possible demonstration in their behalf. The truth is that from various sources he (Sanchez) has heard that the said King of England refuses to enter this Italian league or to be named in it, alleging as an excuse that he must first see the treaty, in which, as reported, they have not given him the place he ought to have. Such are the news that came from England on the 27th ulto.; whether the King has since changed his mind or not he (Sanchez) cannot say.—Venice, 7th July 1526.
Signed: "Alonso Sanchez."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imperial and Catholic Majesty the Emperor and King, our Lord."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Venice. Alonso Sanchez, 7th July."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 6.
8 July. 478. News from Rome.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
f. 27.
On Sunday, the 8th of July 1526, at Rome, in the Pope's chapel, solemn proclamation was made of the league between His Holiness and the Kings of France, England and Scotland, the Signory of Venice, the Duke of Milan, the Swiss, and other potentates. His Holiness was accompanied during mass by the ambassadors of the said Princes. Mass was said by Cardinal de Trana (Trani) and the oration delivered by a servant (fn. n6) of Cardinal Trigulcci (Triulcio), who after mentioning the late wars between the Emperor and the French King, and attributing to Fortune the reverses sustained by the latter, spoke of the Spaniards in very offensive words, exaggerating the bad treatment they had inflicted on the people [of Italy], and announcing that the Pope, moved to compassion, had made a confederacy with the aforesaid Kings and potentates, for the purpose of expelling the Imperialists from Italy. The oration over, the singers chanted the Te Deum Laudamus, after which the Pope said certain prayers, and then retired to his apartments, where he caused all the ambassadors [of the League] and a good number of the Cardinals to stay to dinner with him.
Spanish. Copy. p. ½.
8 July. 479. Lope de Soria, Imperial Ambassador in Genoa, to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
ff. 14–16.
Wrote on the 28th of June last. The Duke of Bourbon left on the 2nd inst. for Milan. Two days before, a gentleman arrived, sent by the Senate of that city to congratulate him, and beg he would go thither as soon as possible, as the people were anxiously expecting him.
The castle of Lodi has fallen into the enemy's hands. It was so weak that it could scarcely offer any resistance. Captain Quesada, who was inside with about 50 men, rather than surrender it, broke through the lines of the Venetians, and managed to escape, carrying Herrera, the warder of Tarento, (fn. n7) in a litter (letica). They say he will not die of his wounds, but will be maimed for life.
The Pope's troops and the Venetians effected a junction close to Lodi. They went afterwards to Marignano, three leagues from Milan, where they encamped. The Imperial army, infantry as well as cavalry, is inside Milan, in strong position, and with plenty of provisions, waiting for the enemy, in case they should try to relieve the castle.
The Duke [of Bourbon] took with him the first instalment on the 100,000 ducats, the rest will be sent to him when due. More remittances will soon be required, for the above sum is insufficient for the wants of the Imperial army. (Cipher:) When funds are sent, let them come in specie, because bills can no longer be discounted or cashed, and no money is allowed to leave Rome, Florence or Venice, the principal marts in Italy.
(Common writing:) Some light brigantines are required to carry despatches between this port and Barcelona, as there will be no means henceforward of sending couriers by land. The brigantines can do service up to October. Begs to be provided with funds for all these expenses.
(Cipher:) The Imperial army must be reinforced; the enemy increases his forces every day, and so manifest is the ill-will of some of the country people, that our troops are liable to be seriously molested in certain localities. Such as the army is, it is called upon to keep up its reputation and chastise the enemies. If defeated or broken up it would be difficult to raise another one like it. Trusts to God that notwithstanding the inferiority of its numbers compared with those of the enemy, the army will do its duty, and that His Imperial Majesty will soon hear of another victory as signal and decisive [as that of Pavia].
(Common writing:) Intelligence has come that the Venetians are about to send 15 of their galleys to join the Papal fleet under Andrea Doria. Also that on the 3rd inst. Pedro Navarro had passed through Lyons en route for Marseilles, there to fit out a number of galleys, of which he (Navarro) was to take the command; that the Papal and Venetian forces are to make a joint attack upon Genoa, and also invade Naples and Sicily. If such reports be true—and there is every reason to fear they are—it will be necessary to collect a sufficient force to meet that of the enemy. The Neapolitan galleys might come here to join those of this Republic, because the Imperial fleet, divided as it is between this city, Naples and Seville, cannot accomplish anything; whereas, being together and under an able captain, they might work better. (Cipher:) Should the Pope's galleys and those of Venice appear in sight of this city, in its present almost defenceless state, he (Soria) fears the Genoese will be obliged to accept the enemy's terms, and that even the Duke [of Bourbon] will not be able to prevent it. It is, therefore, of urgent need to provide for its defence as soon as possible, for if the enemy takes possession of it, the supplies for the Imperial army, as well as the communication with Spain and the fitting out of the fleets, will be seriously impeded.
(Common writing:) The Switzers held a diet on the 22nd of June last, wherein it was resolved not to arm except at the King of France's request. (fn. n8) Yet late advices from Lyons state that the French were already collecting money for the pay of the said Switzers, who were to come down in numbers and join the army of the League. Count of Saint Pol was soon expected [in Italy] at the head of 500 lances.
Since writing the above, he (Soria) has received letters from the Duke of Sessa and Don Hugo de Moncada, in date of the 26th June. (Cipher:) They are forwarded by the Duke of Ferrara, as well as the enclosed for His Imperial Majesty, giving an account of the ambassadors' last negotiations with the Pope. (fn. n9) Is afraid that in future all couriers will be detained by the enemy, and, therefore, sends the present despatch by sea to Barcelona, besides a duplicate by a land route. If not received before the 24th inst. it will be a sign that it has been seized in France. All the Emperor's servants in these parts are of opinion that the German troops now in Catalonia should be sent to reinforce the Imperial army. With such a reinforcement, and those which the Archduke is now preparing and which will soon be at Milan, much good may be accomplished.—Genoa, 8 July 1526.
Signed: "Lope de Soria."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imperial and Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Genoa. From Lope de Soria, 18th July."
Spanish. Original. Contemporary deciphering. pp. 5.
8 July. 480. Don Pedro [Jordan] de Urries to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
f. 25.
Wrote, the other day, by a courier, who left Genoa by land, announcing the arrival of the Duke [of Bourbon]. Not knowing, however, whether his despatch has been received, writes again to inform His Imperial Majesty of the state of affairs, and give his opinion thereupon. Thinks the first thing to be done is for the Germans, now in Catalonia, to come [to Italy], and land either at Portu or at Gaheta (Gaeta), there to join Cardinal Colonna, who might be appointed commander-in-chief in those parts, and instructed to march upon Rome, after taking possession of the castles and fortresses in the neighbourhood. The Archduke to send reinforcements as soon as possible, for although the Imperial army in Lombardy is efficient enough, the reported arrival of both Switzers and French in Italy might place it in a difficult position. A body of Spanish infantry of between 4,000 and 5,000 men might also be levied. By allowing the recruits passage free of cost, and provisions for the voyage, double that number can easily be enlisted in the towns of Castile and Aragon. Dreaded as they are in Italy, their presence is sure to do much good.
Since His Imperial Majesty sees the wickedness of these people, he must not be deceived by their promises. If money is wanting, let the Emperor take one third of the Church revenues for himself; for certainly he is the owner of all our property, and it is but just that we should give him a portion of what we own. (fn. n10) If the rents of one year be not enough, let him take those of three, and also those of such Cardinals as consign to the Pope all their revenues from Church endowments in Spain, not forgetting the Datary and others who have advised him to pursue this highly commendable behaviour (esta buena obra) under the present circumstances.
Let not His Imperial Majesty be anxious for the result. We are as sure of victory as of late, provided proper means are taken, &c.—Genoa, 8th July 1526.
Signed: "Don Pedro de Urries."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imperial, and Catholic Majesty."
Spanish. Original. pp. 2.
8 July. 481. Lope Hurtado de Mendoza to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
ff. 46–49.
Wrote on the 28th ulto. from Turin, by a brother and lieutenant of Count Gayaço, who went post haste with despatches from Milan, &c. Has heard since from some Neapolitan gentlemen, and also from Captain Figueroa, who comes straight from the Viceroy (Charles de Lannoy), that the said lieutenant had been detained in France, and that he (Hurtado) will not be allowed to proceed without a safe-conduct. The Duke (of Savoy) has applied for one; hopes to get it in eight or ten days. In the meantime will say what he thinks of the prospects of the war.
(Cipher:) Against three different armies, now united together, it will be very difficult, if not impossible, for the Imperialists to hold their ground; considerable reinforcements must, therefore, come from Germany; even then it will be no easy matter for them to join forces, the roads between Milan and Cremona being occupied by the Pope's army and by the Venetians, in such a way that the Imperialists cannot communicate with each other. We have at Cremona upwards of 3,000 men, i.e., 5,000 mouths to feed, (fn. n11) everyone of whom forages where he can. The most efficient troops, who are the Germans, are not paid, nor is there means of sending money for their support. The castle and the country people are alike against them. They have been for upwards of one month shut up in such a way that it will be a miracle if they can hold the city any longer. The same may be said with regard to Milan and to the other places, like Pavia and Alessandria, the garrisons of which might easily have been concentrated at Milan. Now that the French army has arrived, it will be next to impossible to accomplish this, for the enemy are so numerous that they will cut the roads and stop provisions. The army, therefore, has two great risks to encounter, the superior power of the enemy and hunger. His Imperial Majesty must without further delay bring about peace, or provide the means of carrying on war by sea as well as by land.
If His Imperial Majesty decide on war, it is of the greatest importance—since the Viceroy is now in Spain—to have the largest possible fleet fitted out, so as to put on board as much as 1,000 cavalry, or as many as it can hold, besides all the German infantry now at Perpignan, and the greatest possible number of Spaniards; the fleet so manned and appointed to be under orders to sail for any part of this Italian coast, where it may be most wanted,—Genoa, Florence, Rome, or Naples; for wherever those forces land, the enemy will lose much of his arrogance, the Imperialists will be encouraged to perform greater deeds, and some of the confederates may, perhaps, be tempted to abandon the league. Many will perchance manifest their good feelings towards the Empire, who dare not do it now, owing to the enemy's great power. A good sea commander is also wanted, a man of ability and reputation; for it is evident that the confederates will try their utmost that way, by attacking Genoa, Sicily, or Naples. The King of Portugal (Joao III.) has four excellent galleys, well manned and provided with excellent artillery, of which he makes no use at present, besides several good vessels, much artillery and many mariners: an important fact to know. Should the Emperor approach nearer to the French frontier, it would help much towards countenancing the military operations by sea or land.
Has found here [at Chambery] two men of low quality; one a servant of Cardinal Frenesis (Farnesio), whose name is Miçer Latino, an agent of the Pope; the other one Colino (sic), who professes to be the agent of the French King, and is a servant of Mr. de Vara, the Grand Steward. (fn. n12) The Duke says that the mission of these people is to induce him to enter the league and grant a passage to the confederated armies, and that he told the former, "The Pope ought rather to exert himself for the establishment of universal peace. Whenever he does, he shall find me ready to obey his orders I could nowise enter into a league against the Emperor, being, as I am, the Vicar of the Empire." His answer to the French ran thus: "Let the King, your master, send me the articles of the league, and I will answer him to his full satisfaction." As to passage through his territory, he (the Duke) will grant it, provided the French troops come with their commissaries, and proper notice be given a fortnight before. This answer would show that the Duke intends to remain neutral, as he has done at other times, following the wishes of the Switzers and of his own vassals. (fn. n13)
The Count of Geneva is here, not very much pleased with the settlement of his affairs at Court. He (Hurtado) has asked him what his intentions are respecting this league. His answer is that he intends to serve the Emperor as on former occasions, but that he has no money. Upon his inquiry, whether in case of being provided with funds he could raise any troops, he said that he could in a very short time raise 6,000 Switzers on the frontiers of his estate, and bring them in without the enemy becoming aware of it (y que se meteria sin verse?); in short, that he would do anything Mr. de Bourbon told him. He (Hurtado) has informed the latter of the offer made by the Count, that he may decide what is best for the Imperial service.
The Duke [of Savoy] has sent for the infanta [his wife]. Should His Imperial Majesty make up his mind to cross over [to Italy], which is the Duchess' most ardent wish, certainly the confederates would not fare so well here, for the Duchess looks more to the Emperor's interests than to her own.—Chamari (Chambery), 8 July 1526.
Signed: "Lope Hurtado."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Catholic Majesty of the Emperor, our Lord and Master."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Lope Hurtado, 8th July. By duplicate."
Spanish. Original almost entirely in cipher. Contemporary deciphering. pp. 6½.
9 July. 482. The Same to the Same.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
f. 54.
(Cipher:) No news from Milan, which is rather a good sign, for had there been any, unfavourable to the Imperial cause, he (Hurtado) is sure to have heard it, for bad news generally travels fast.
(Common writing:) Mons. de Bourbon landed at Genoa on the 28th, the date of his (Hurtado's) last letter. Yesterday a gentleman of his suite, who was going to Burgundy on a mission, passed through this town (Chambery). His master, he said, would be at Milan on the 4th or 5th inst. at the latest. Similar intelligence has been received from Turin. The Duke's presence at the camp will be very opportune, now that the articles of this Italian league are known, and the intentions of the confederates discovered. But with all this he (Hurtado) cannot help referring to his letter of the 28th. It is reported that the Marquis of Saluzzo is to command the French forces, mustering 300 men-at-arms, 6,000 volunteers and 8,000 Switzers besides. Of such military preparations however, if true, the Viceroy must be best informed, having resided so long at the French court.
(Cipher:) A courier from Rome has passed to-day through this town (Chambery). His news are that the Duke of Ferrara had taken possession of Modena, and declared for the Emperor. If true, it would be a great help to our cause.
The Duke of Savoy shows goodwill in everything relating to the Imperial service. Yet, requested by him (Hurtado) to forward any letters or despatches that might come directed to the Emperor, he answered but hesitatingly, that he would do his best, which is a proof that another and safer channel must be looked for. He has nevertheless promised to supply the Imperial army in Lombardy with provisions from Piedmont, provided they are regularly paid for.
(Common writing:) This Italian league has evidently been made not so much for the protection of the Duke of Milan as the confederates assert, but to destroy the Imperial army in Lombardy. Should the enemy gain his object (which God forbid) it would be next to impossible to succour Naples or Sicily.—Chamary (Chambery), 9 July 1526.
Signed: "Lope Hurtado."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imperial, and Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. Lope Hurtado, 9 July."
Spanish. Holograph partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet. pp. 3.
9 July. 483. The Same to the Same.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
f. 49.
Since his letter of yesterday news has come from Milan The Duke [of Savoy] has heard that Mons. de Bourbon arrived there on the 6th, and was received by the Milanese with every demonstration of joy,—tapestry hanging from the windows, &c. Other towns in the Duchy had made similar rejoicings. The enemy was still at Marignano and had tried to introduce succour into the castle of Milan, but had not been successful, losing many men in the retreat. They expect, however, assistance from France and from the Switzers.
The Marquis of Saluzzo arrived at Lyons on the 11th inst. On the 15th he had not yet left. He was to start on his intended expedition as soon as the men-at-arms were collected in Grenoble, and would then pass the Alps.
The Duke [of Savoy] has also received intelligence of the 7th inst., stating that seven companies of Switzers had been raised, and were to be placed under the command of a colonel named Federico Bozano, (fn. n14) who had gone thither for that purpose. It is also reported that Renzo de Cheri was at the court [of France], and that Theodoro Tribulcio (Triulzo) and other Italian chiefs, among whom there is scarcely one worth notice, were to accompany the expedition, under the Marquis of Saluzzo, who, as before stated, was to be commander-in-chief.
The Duke [of Savoy] has been keeping this courier from day to day, no doubt in order to ask permission of the French; otherwise he would not dare send him. As it is very doubtful whether the courier will be allowed to pass, he (Hurtado) has entrusted a duplicate of this letter to Captain Figueroa, that he may forward it as soon as possible to Spain.—Chamari, 18 July 1526.
Signed: "Lope Hurtado."
P.S.—This letter was written, signed, and sealed when Ponperan Monperan (sic) arrived (fn. n15) with letters from Milan, in date of the 15th. Mr. de Bourbon writes to say that things are going on very well there; he hopes that the castle will soon surrender. The Venetian army on the 9th inst. had advanced as far as the Borgo of Milan, and attacked Porta Romana, intending no doubt to revictual the castle. They had been repulsed, and on the same night had fallen back on Marignano and Condaño (Codogno), where they were still encamped, fearing an attack. Had written to the Count [of Geneva?] the particulars of the affair. Dat. ut supra.
Addressed: "To the most Sacred, Imperial, Catholic Majesty of the Emperor, our Lord."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Lope Hurtado. 18 July 1526."
Spanish. Original mostly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering. pp. 7.
9 July. 484. Secretary Perez to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
ff. 29–32.
Sends with this the duplicate of his letter of the 3rd, which the master of a Portuguese galleon, bound for Genoa, took. (Cipher:) It was directed to Lope de Soria, the ambassador, with orders to transmit the same to Secretary Soria.
Nothing new has occurred since that date except that the Papal troops are marching on Sienna, with very good artillery, accompanied by many of the outlaws (foraxidos) who are supposed to have friends inside the city. Very few of the Pope's troops remain in Rome; as His Holiness has nothing to fear in these parts, they are quite sufficient for his defence. Many of His Imperial Majesty's servants would have preferred the Duke [of Sessa] remaining here, that he might be a sort of obstacle (torcedor) to His Holiness' designs. Has reasons to think that he (the Duke) has gone to Naples on His Majesty's service, and that Don Ugo still remains with the Colonnese at Genençano. The agent of Vespasiano Colonna here told him (Perez) the other day that the Pope had sent for him and inquired whether his intention was to keep peace or make war on his territory. In the latter case he (the Pope) would give orders for his towns and villages on the frontier to be put in a state of defence. He had not done it yet lest they should think his design was to attack them. He (Perez) does not know what the said agent answered.
(Common writing:) Sends His Majesty copy of the treaty of league as published at Rome; the proclamation of which is to be made with great solemnity on Sunday next. There are to be great rejoicings and illuminations; the prayer to be said by a secretary of Cardinal Triulcis (Triulci). Alberto di Carpi is in great spirits, and gives out that he will not be satisfied this time with the restitution of Carpi.
A rumour is afloat here that Mr. de Labret (Albret) will go to Navarre with forces, and that the King of England is to invade Flanders, whilst he of France will keep up the war in Italy with 10,000 Swiss infantry, besides 500 lances, which are to invade Naples under the command of Monsieur de St. Pol,. God grant that he may share the fate of the Duke of Albany, who, after all his boasting, had to apply for a safe-conduct to return to France!
The only news from Germany is the assurance of a forthcoming succour. It is said that 3,000 Germans are already coming down under the command of Don Pedro de Cordoba; (fn. n16) but on the other hand the report is that the enemy will occupy the mountain passes, and prevent if possible their entering Italy.
People here attach little importance to M. de Bourbon's arrival [in Italy], owing to his having come without an army. He (Perez) has heard that the Pope laughs at him, and says, "His Imperial Majesty not knowing what to do with him, sends him among us as a castaway and a lost man." (fn. n17)
Letters from Hungary were read in the last Consistory, purporting that the Turk was really coming down in great force, and that the kingdom would ultimately be lost unless relieved in time. No preparation is made here for meeting the danger likely to fall on Christianity; far from it, they throw every impediment in the Archduke's way, as His Imperial Majesty may judge from the enclosed copy of His Highness' letter to the Pope, which is very much praised and has given great satisfaction. Master Salamanca, the Archduke's agent and orator (solicitador) at this court, read it to the Pope the other day.
A servant of Monsieur of Bourbon arrived lately with a message to the Pope, begging him to desist from this war, and make his peace with the Emperor, who had always shown himself an obedient son of his and loved him better than anyone else ever did. The Pope's answer to the message was the same as usual. He wished to become the Emperor's friend, but could do nothing without the advice of his confederates, and then he (the Pope) proceeded to state his reasons for joining the league, &c.
The Duke's agent then told him that he was the bearer of letters for the Duke of Sessa and for Don Ugo, and wanted to deliver them personally. To which the Pope replied, "You had better give them to Secretary Perez for transmission; if, however, you decide upon taking them yourself a safe-conduct shall be granted."
He (Perez) advised the messenger to leave Rome the next day, in company with Commander Aguilera, who, having come last week with a message from the Duke and Don Ugo, was returning to them. The message, he has been told, was to prevail on His Holiness to suspend the march of his troops on Sienna, as well as all hostile movements between Rome and Naples. After a good deal of discussion, His Holiness declared that he could not order his men to stop, but that if the means were found to content and satisfy Siennese outlaws (foraxidos), he had no objection to induce them to desist from the attack on that city. Commander Aguilera is now going to Don Ugo in search of powers and instructions for treating with the Siennese. The Pope, on his side, has sent a message to the said outlaws (foraxidos) to pause in their march until all hope of an agreement has vanished. With regard to the other demand of the Imperial ministers, viz., that he should suspend all military movements against Naples, the Pope said there was no difficulty at all; it had never been his intention to invade that kingdom, although not one of the stipulations made with him had been fulfilled. He was not permitted to fill up a single ecclesiastical benefice; his apostolic bulls and briefs had been completely disregarded, &c. To this long list of grievances His Holiness added that one Cesare, belonging to the Colonna faction, had lately taken possession of one of his towns, called Nania, and arrested the commissary he had sent thither for inquiry. He wants before all things that the town be restored to him, and his commissary set at liberty.
This is in substance what His Holiness told Commander Aguilera. He (Perez) cannot say what Don Ugo will decide in consequence of the Pope's answer; all he knows is that the Papal troops and the outlaws (foraxidos) are marching on Sienna in all possible haste; that they are provided with good artillery, and that the Pope declares that before they reach the city the Siennese themselves will come out to meet them and deliver up the keys of the gates.
The lieutenant of the Sumaria of Naples has arrived at a place called Orbieto, 60 miles from this city [Rome], where he is now staying, as they neither allow him to proceed on his journey nor return. He has the Pope's permission to come here [to Rome], but it is doubtful whether he will be permitted to enter the city. He has the reputation of being the man who best knows the way of procuring money in Naples.
Sunday last the league was proclaimed with great solemnity, illuminations, firing of guns, &c. All the ambassadors of the confederated Princes dined with the Pope.
As Knight Commander (Aguilera), bearer of this, is leaving, he (Perez) will not write at length, but refer to his other letters.—Rome, 9th of July 1526.
Signed: "Perez."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imperial, Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Rome. From Secretary Perez, 9th July."
Spanish. Holograph, partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering (by duplicate). pp. 3.
10 July. 485. The Abbot of Najera to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 38,
ff. 33–4.
Wrote on the 27th of June by Lope Hurtado de Mendoça. Since then the forces of the Pope and the Venetians, mustering 20,000 men, after effecting their junction at Old Lodi, two miles from Lodi, marched together on the 28th on Marignano, ten miles from this place. Little by little they approached this city (Milan) till they came in sight of the suburbs (burgos) in front of the gates Porto Romana and Porta Tusa. This took place the very day of the Duke of Bourbon's arrival [at Milan]. On the 6th of July, a little before day-break, the enemy made an unsuccessful attack upon the city gates, which lasted till night, the artillery playing on both sides; but they lost so many men, that at one hour of the night they raised their camp in great confusion and retired to Marignano, there to wait for orders. Their loss in killed and wounded is said to amount to nearly 6,000 men.
The Duke of Bourbon and other commanders of this Imperial army, such as the Marquis del Guasto and Antonio de Leyva, are of opinion that the first thing to be done now is to distribute among the troops the small sum of money which came from Genoa, and something more which may perhaps be procured in this city. If Milan give 30,000 ducats—which he (Najera) thinks will be rather a difficult thing, since there is no money left in the city—the generals calculate upon issuing to the Spanish infantry two months' pay; 10,000 ducats on account to the men-at-arms and Germans here and at Pavia, and two more payments to the light horse. They also propose raising five thousand Italian infantry, namely, three for the defence of this castle of Milan, and two for that of Cremona, so as to be able to concentrate here all the forces of the Imperial army, and take the offensive, although it must be said that very strong doubts are entertained whether the Germans at Cremona will consent to join, unless they are paid the 39,000 ducats owing to them.
The plan of campaign of these generals consists in marching out against the confederates and giving them battle before they receive succour from the Switzers and from France. Hitherto the former have refused to come to their aid, but when they see that the French King sends his own men-at-arms and artillery, as he is in the habit of doing (como suele hacer), they will advance. Such being the case, His Imperial Majesty must consider that the entire world is against him, and that he has no other friends left save the Archduke and this army. Money must be provided, as well as reinforcements to defend Genoa against an attack of the enemy, for were that city to be taken (which God forbid) it would prove the ruin of the Imperial cause in Italy. The Archduke must be told to advance as soon as possible against the Venetians, for they and the Pope have so stopped the roads that no letters come either from Rome or from Germany. It is only owing to a most ingenious device that he (Najera) received yesterday letters from the Duke of Sessa and from Don Ugo, in date of the 25th ulto., informing him of what the latter had negotiated with the Pope.
Prothonotary Caracciolo is to go to the castle to-day, to see the Duke Francesco Sforza. He is to tell him that he must not expect succour for the present, the army of the confederates having withdrawn in confusion after the last unsuccessful attack. He goes by order of the Duke of Bourbon, the Marquis [del Guasto] and Antonio de Leyva.
Milan cannot be effectually defended against the enemy with less than 15,000 men. The generals, perceiving that no other city of this Estate can furnish provisions enough to maintain such a number of men, have determined to concentrate their forces. There are now in Milan 9,000 Spanish and German infantry, 700 men-at-arms, and 1,200 light horse, who have until now defended this city and Estate valiantly and efficiently, as the Duke of Bourbon has been able to judge on his arrival. God in His justice will grant the Emperor victory over people who in return for the peace so generously offered to them made war on him. Count Gayaço, captain of a company of light cavalry, Juan de Urbina, Corvera and the rest of the captains of this army have behaved so well before the enemy, day and night, that it would be well for the Emperor to write to them in acknowledgment and praise of their services.
Antonio de Leyva is very much disturbed at hearing that His Majesty gives credit to (da credito) certain reports accusing him (Leyva) of being the principal cause of this war by extorting ransoms (que ha llevado dineros de rescates). He (Najera) can declare that, ever since the death of the Marquis of Pescara, the Emperor has had no better man at the head of his army, so strict in his military duties, so honourable, and so skilful in warfare. As for taking ransom money, he (the Abbot) can swear that ever since he has been attached to this army Antonio de Leyva has not received one farthing from that quarter, nor is he the sort of man to think of such a thing. On the contrary, it may be confidently asserted that both he and the Marquis del Guasto have done everything in their power to prevent this war, since very often, in order to support this army in needy times and prevent them from disbanding and attacking the lands of the Pope or the Venetians in quest of food, not to be procured elsewhere, they have pledged and sold their own property and that of their friends and relatives, even to their very shirts (hasta las camisas). Should His Imperial Majesty find out that his (Najera's) asseverations concerning so worthy a person as Antonio de Leyva are untrue he consents to have his head cut off.—Milan, 10th July 1526.'
Signed: "El Abad de Najera."
Addressed: "To the most Sacred, Imperial and Catholic Majesty, &c."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1526. From Milan. From the Abbot of Najera, 10th of July."
Spanish. Holograph. pp. 3.


  • n1. Juan Perez, Sessa's Secretary, remained in charge of the Spanish embassy after the departure of that Duke and Don Ugo from Rome.
  • n2. Both seem to have been intercepted, for they are not in the volume. Guicciardini mentions about this time the seizure of certain correspondence between the Imperial commanders in Lombardy and the ambassadors at Rome, Venice and Genoa. lib. XVII.
  • n3. Thus in the original endorsement, but the mistake is too glaring to require notice.
  • n4. For a description of the pageants on this occasion, see the extracts from Sanuto's Diaries in Rawdon Brown, Venetian State Papers, vol. III., p. 579.
  • n5. He was in the Pope's service, not in the Venetian, as here stated.
  • n6. "A very learned Roman, by name El Grono," says Domenico Venier, the Venetian ambassador, in a letter to the Signory, dated Rome, 8th of July. See Rawdon Brown, Venetian State Papers, vol. IV., Appendix, p. 490.
  • n7. Felipe de Herrera, the brother of Commander Miguel de Herrera, who was wounded by a hackbut shot through the jaws. See above, p. 773.
  • n8. "Y en su dieta declararon que no podian dar gente á ninguno excepto al Rey de Francia."
  • n9. See a note at p. 759. Indeed, the agreement under No. 466 seems to have been one of the papers forwarded by Soria on this occasion. As Don Ugo and the Duke left Rome on the 24th, their letter to the Imperial ambassador at Genoa must have been written from Marino, or some other town in the lands of the Colonnese.
  • n10. Don Pedro de Urries was himself an ecclesiastic and Archbishop of Saragossa at the time. He was residing in Rome for certain business of his see, when, like most Spaniards, he was obliged to quit. See also No. 136, p. 244.
  • n11. "Nuestra gente que está en Carmona pasa de tres mil hombres de guerra, que han cinco mil bocas; todos comen á discreccion."
  • n12. "Aqui he hallado con el Duque dos hombres de poca calidad; el uno de ellos del Papa que se llama Miçer Latino criado del Cardenal Frenesis (Farnese); otro del Rey de Francia, que se llama Colino, criado de Mossiur de Vara, gran camarero del Rey."
  • n13. "Que quiere ser neutral, como otras vezes lo ha sido, segun la voluntad de los suizos y de sus vassallos."
  • n14. Federigo da Bozzolo, according to Guicciardini, lib. XVI. F. Leandro Alberti in his Descrittione di tutta l'Italia (Venecia, 1577, 4to), an invaluable work for the history of these times, calls him Federigo Gonzaga, detto il Bozzolo, and says of him, whilst describing the castles and villages on the banks of the Oglio (fol. 404): "Et seguitando alla sinistra riua dell' Oglio evvi Bozzolo nobile castello, ma molto piu nobilitato da Federico Gonzaga cognominato da Bozzolo, che fù home molto prode in trattar l'armi & valoroso capitano di soldati il qual passò di questa vita gli anni passati lasciando di se gran desiderio a i mortali." Federigo was the son of Giampietro, of the house of Mantua, uncle to the celebrated Luigi Gonzaga detto Rodomonte. See the Life of this last by Ireneo Affo, Vita di Luigi Gonzaga, &c. Parma, 1780, 4to.
  • n15. "Teniendo esta escrita [y] cerrada han llegado aqui ponperan [y] monperan (sic) que Mossiur de Borbon despachó de Milan á XV."
  • n16. A brother of Sessa, who was Master of the Horse to Archduke Ferdinand.
  • n17. "Que V. Magd por echarle de cabe si, le envió por acá como hombre perdido."