Spain: June 1528, 1-15

Pages 697-712

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 3 Part 2, 1527-1529. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1877.

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June 1528, 1-15

2 June. 443. The Same to the Same.
m. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 99.
Encloses list of native noblemen on whose fidelity the Emperor can rely; also of those who have treacherously forsaken his cause and gone over to the French. The former should be rewarded; the latter punished with confiscation and death.
No letters from Spain have been received for some time. Need not point out the danger of such a system. Men generally lose courage when their perilous situation is not attended to.
The Prince [of Orange] is doing his utmost to keep the Germans together; how long he will be able to do so is more than he (Alarcon) can say, unless the succour arrives speedily. A person of authority and influence is wanted to act as viceroy, and another to be sent to the Pope's Court, well experienced in diplomatic affairs, and proof against his craftiness.
Points out the danger of appointing Italian captains for Spanish companies of foot. Every one of them has gone over to the enemy. The Prince [of Orange] ought to be written to about this, and a general order issued that whenever a captain fails to name good lieutenants and ensigns, the nomination of such officers shall devolve upon the general-in-chief.
Commends the services of Hernando Gonzaga, Mossen Bastida, the governor of Castellamare, Count Miñano (Mignano), and the warder of Brindisi, as well as those of Fabricio Marramaldo, now quite free from the charges brought against him, Juan de Urbina, the Lieutenant of the Summaria, and Captain Andres Davalos. All are highly deserving of the Imperial favour.
One of the above-named, the warder of Brindisi, has stoutly defended that town and castle against the enemy. He is as good for war as for peace, and ought to be appointed to the bishopric of Aversa, which happens to be vacant just now. Julio di Capua, to whom the captainship of men-at-arms once held by the Prince of Melfi (Caracciolo) was given, ought to be confirmed in it.
Recommends also Il Gobbo, and the brothers of the Lord of Alcaudete. (fn. n1) —[Naples], 2nd June 1528.
Indorsed: "Relacion de diversas cartas, &c."
Spanish. Contemporary copy. 1.
2 June. 444. Pope Clement to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 2016.
Lib. de Berz.
vol. xxvi. f. 97.
Has empowered his Legates in England to investigate the merits of the divorce case between the King and Queen of England, and to pronounce judgment after asking and obtaining his approval.
Promises neither to recall his commissioners nor forbid them from proceeding with the cause. Ita est.
Latin. Copy from the Papal Archives in the Collection Berzosa, made by command of Philip II,. of Spain, .. 1.
3 June. 445. Secretary Perez to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 386.
Since his despatch of the 26th ulto., (fn. n2) letters have been received in confirmation of the last news about the Germans. They must, to all accounts, be already at Sancti Spiritus on this side of Bologna, for the Pope, it is said, has dispatched from Orbieto certain commissioners to see that they were properly quartered and victualled throughout his estates. He had likewise sent to the Duke [Henry] of Brunswick one of his chamberlains, the Bishop of Sesena (Cesenna), requesting him to come by way of Florence, and subject that city to the Papal or Medicean rule, as it was before. As the said bishop was at Verona, dining quietly with the late Datary (Gianmatheo Giberti), he (the bishop) was arrested by some soldiers whom the Signory had sent for that purpose. It is, moreover, reported that the Datary, who is bishop of Verona, was arrested at the same time with him; this last intelligence, however, requires confirmation. At any rate it is certain that Venice is about to send an ambassador to the Pope at Orbieto, suspecting, as they do suspect, that the aforesaid Bishop of Cesenna has been treating with the Duke matters to their disadvantage and against the Italian League.
News has come of Leyva having taken Pavia, garrisoned by 700 foot and 300 horse of the French, and that he was marching on Alessandria, which he hoped soon to reduce, and then proceed against Genoa, where the citizens had proclaimed the Union and independence of their city.
Advices from Lautrech's camp states that a Venetian officer, serving with the French, has written to his proveditor announcing the arrival of the German reinforcements. He could not conceive how Lautrech ventured to remain so long where he was, for certainly, if caught between two fires by the Imperialists, he could not escape from utter destruction. The Venetian had advised him (Lautrech) to raise his camp and go elsewhere. Cannot say whether he will, but hitherto there has been no stir observable in his camp; on the contrary, the enemy continues as usual discharging his artillery at us, though with little or no effect. We, on the other hand, make frequent sallies, in which the enemy is generally worsted. On the 28th ulto. Hernando de Gonzaga went out of Naples with a few light horse, and meeting a company of men-at-arms of Mossiur de Beni, (fn. n3) a Scottish knight, destroyed it completely, for, out of 60 men, they brought in 40 prisoners, and the rest remained dead on the field,—a most fortunate encounter, and one considered as of very good omen, since it has been observed that on the two occasions when this very company of Moss, de Beni was cut to pieces in Lombardy, a most signal victory was gained over the French.
On the 30th, 100 of our men made a sally and brought in as many prisoners. (fn. n4)
The Germans here are dissatisfied with their present colonel, and talk of deposing him, and taking for their commander Jorge Fruntsperg, who is now coming with Brunswick. This notwithstanding, they complain bitterly that they have no wine to drink; they search the houses most assiduously for it, and will not allow others to drink it. He (Perez) has twice lost what little he had in his cellar. Bears it with patience, as do the Spaniards in general, in the hope that very soon Lautrech will be compelled to raise his camp, when abundance of that article is sure to be found.
The Spaniards who came from Sicily, and were last at Gaeta, are still in possession of Rocca Guillelma and other villages, which they took from the French. Cannot say for certain whether it is these Spaniards whom the Prince of Malfe (Amalfi), who has lately taken part with the French, has been ordered to attack; all he knows is that Don Alonso Manrique, who has the command of them, has come to Naples to hold a conference with the Prince.
Juan Antonio Muxetula must by this time be at Orbieto, as advices have come from that city that the Pope had sent an escort for him. It is generally believed that when he (the Pope) hears of the arrival of the Germans in Lombardy, of Leyva's successes, and of the probability of Lautrech soon raising the siege of Naples, he will speedily forsake the League and come to an agreement with His Imperial Majesty; others think that he will go to Ancona. If he does, it will be rather a bad sign.
The Ferrarese gentleman, (fn. n5) who came to announce the arrival of the Germans to us, left Gaeta on the 27th, and will soon reach their camp, as he travels post.
There is a report that Rome is getting very empty from fear of the Germans or French going thither, although if the latter raise their camp, it is to be presumed that they will rather retire to Barletta and other towns on the coast in order to gain time, &c.
Secretary Seron has been put on shore, and is still a prisoner in Lautrech's camp. Hitherto no ransom has been fixed. Philippino's galleys are always in sight of this port, preventing all vessels and even boats from entering or leaving this bay.
A report is current here that the Pope has ordered the siege of Civittà Vecchia to be raised, and that his orders have been complied with. The news, however, requires confirmation.
Lautrech has given to Philippino Doria the towns of Castelamare and Vico, which are said to be worth 120,000 ducats. As the castle of the former place still holds for His Imperial Majesty, Philippino wished Lautrech to give him conditional possession of it, promising, in case the French raised the siege of Naples, to take the castle with his own forces before a month was over. Lautrech, as it would seem, has not acceded to his demands; (cipher:) upon which the Prince of Orange has sent him a message, that if he will only serve the Emperor, anything he may ask on that score will be immediately granted to him. Cannot say what Count Philippino's answer has been, but the Prince is sure to have written home about it.
(Common writing:) Certain letters of Lautrech to the King of France have been intercepted, the substance of which is that unless an army of at least 18,000 infantry and 500 Switzers come immediately to his assistance, the whole of the French conquests in Lombardy and Naples will be irretrievably lost. Six thousand of his best troops had been slain by the enemy or died of the plague that was raging in his camp more fiercely than ever. To take Naples with such a force as he had left, and against a whole army to defend it, was wholly out of the question. Had the French fleet come when he (Lautrech) asked for it, the King would now surely be the master both of Sicily and Naples. Since the negotiations which the King was carrying on in Spain were at an end, and his object could no longer be accomplished, there was no other expedient left but that of sending the whole of the French fleet to Naples, and with the needful reinforcements by land try to re-establish the balance. With this letter of Lautrech to the King, there were others for the Queen Regent, and for other influential persons at the Court of France, begging them to assist in persuading Francis, &c. He (Perez) has not read the letters, but knows one who has. They say that the Prince has forwarded the originals to Spain.
News has been received here that the Duke of Soma has revolted in Calabria, and induced most of the inhabitants of that province, hitherto so faithful and pacific, to declare for the French.
(Cipher:) (fn. n6) Has had a conversation with Antonio Dixar (de Hijar), he who went with the Prince's message to Count Philippino Doria. His report is that there is a very good chance of the said captain, and even of his uncle, Andrea Doria, now passing over to the Emperor's service, provided their terms are accepted. The said Antonio is a man of great ability and much experience in these matters, and is often employed by the Prince and Alarcon.
(Common writing:) Leyva has sent to offer his services to the Pope, saying that he has orders from His Imperial Majesty to do his pleasure in every respect, and begging him to send commissaries to settle the quartering and provisioning of the Imperial troops throughout the estates of the Church, and prevent their inflicting injuries on the inhabitants. The Pope sent to thank him for his offers of service, and despatched the commissaries as requested.
There was in the neighbourhood of this city a celebrated robber of the name of Bertichelo (Berticello), who with a gang of 50 or 60 hackbutiers stopped all travellers and did much injury. Means have been found of securing his services, and he is now at the head of 250 men, with whom he stops the passes in the mountains, intercepts the supplies going to the French camp, and makes numerous prisoners, some of whom, especially those who can pay ransom, are brought here It was he who captured the other day the estafette whom Lautrech was sending to France with letters, and one Gonzaga, a bastard from Milan, who was coming from Lombardy with a message to the French commander. He also took prisoners certain merchants who had contracted to provision the enemy's camp, from whom he expects in time a considerable ransom, besides which, situated as he is in the neighbouring mountain district, where cattle still abound, he provides us with fresh meat.
Recommends Juan de Urbina, &c.—Naples, 3rd June 1528.
Signed: "Perez."
Addressed: To His most Sacred, Imperial, and Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1528. Perez. Naples. 3rd June."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on the margins. pp. 4.
3 June. 446. The Same to the Same.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 99.
In favour of Andres Mendes, whom the Prince of Orange has just named to the post of captain of artillery, vacant by the death of Juan Hieronimo de Trana. The latter, however, has left a brother and three or four sisters entirely without resources, and as he was an excellent soldier, his loss must be felt in the present war.—[Naples], 3rd June 1528.
Indorsed. "Relacion de diversas cartas, &c."
Spanish. Contemporary abstract .. 1.
4 June.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 42,
f. 458.
447. The King of Bohemia and Hungary to Alonso Sanchez.
Magnifico, &c.,—Your letters of the 9th, 13th, 16th, and 17th of May, as well as those of Don Ugo and the Prince of Orange, came duly to hand. The Duke [Henry] of Brunswick at his departure received positive orders from us to effect his junction with Leyva first, and then attend to whichever danger might be the greatest. We have since repeated our orders, and now lately enjoined him to proceed at once to Naples. We feel confident that he will march his army thither anyhow, unless the want of money to pay his men obliges him to stop on the road. We have often written to our brother, the Emperor, pressing him to send funds for the new German army, as We ourselves could not do it owing to the great expenses of the Vayvod's war, and the preparations We are now making against the Turk. For this reason do not for a moment suppose that We can send the 6,000 or 8,000 men lately asked for; unless the Emperor remits to us part of the money lately received in Italy, as We are informed, you must not think of it.—Prague, 4th June 1528.
Spanish. Contemporary copy. pp. 2.
8 June. 448. Secretary Perez to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 398.
Wrote on the 3rd inst. by Captain Pedro Davalos, who Sailed for Spain with the petition of the Spanish infantry. (fn. n7) Since then, on the 6th, Domingo Aguirre, the courier, arrived with a letter for the Prince of Orange, the contents of which, as generally asserted, are such as greatly to comfort this Imperial army with the promise of speedy succour by sea.
Respecting the new German army Lope de Soria writes in date of the 21st ulto. that it had arrived close to Mantua, for which city the said Soria, and the late Doge of Genoa (Antoniotto Adorno), who was with him, were ready to start. Calculates that by this time they must have reached the Bolognese.
The French, it is presumed, will retire to Barletta, or to some other town in the opposite direction to that by which the Germans are coming, though it is asserted by some that their intention is to advance and meet the new army wherever they can do so advantageously, and that for this purpose they have already detached the Prince of Malfe (Amalfi) to San Germano, to stop the passes, &c.
Lautrech wrote the other day to the Prince requesting as a favour (por merced) that he would send him the prisoners he had, and promising to send his. The exchange was accordingly effected, although ours were the more numerous. Since then our light cavalry has gone out and brought in about 60 more French prisoners, all of them men-at-arms.
An estafette coming from Orbieto to the enemy's camp has been captured. The letters mention the fact of the new army having reached Mantua, and of Leyva having taken Viagrassa, and put its garrison, mustering 400 men, to the sword. He (Leyva) had made himself master of several towns and fortresses in the Duchy, with the exception only of Lodi and Cremona, which he intended attacking shortly. Julian de la Speça (Giuliano della Spezzia) had also arrived there (at the German camp?), and most probably his companion with him.
Another of the letters seized on this occasion was from a French ambassador [in Italy] to Lautrech. The King, he says, was disgusted with the Venetians, who did nothing on their side to make the Pope declare openly for the League. He (the King) had said in public that the war in Naples once over he would punish them severely. Another also to Lautrech from one of the King's secretaries named Nicolas, who has long resided at the Pope's Court, adds that all his efforts to bring the latter back to the League had been quite unavailing, and that his Holiness had answered him that he was tired of war, and wished to live in peace, as he was no more of a Frenchman than of an Imperialist.
It appears likewise from the intercepted correspondence that a captain named Paolo Chasco (fn. n8) had left the service of the Signory, and it was feared would go over to the Germans, as Luigi Gonzaga, (fn. n9) one of her principal captains, had done lately. This Gonzaga is not the brother-in-law of the late Vespasiano [Colonna], who now keeps the castle and town of Pagliano for the French, and also for the Pope, as he pretends, but another of the same name. As to Paolo Chasco, the Venetians would prefer his taking pay from the Florentines to his serving the Emperor, because they consider him a good soldier, and so he is, for, whilst serving under the late Giovanni de' Medici, he accomplished remarkable feats of arms.
(Cipher:) Negotiations are still going on between the Prince [of Orange] and Count Philippino [Doria]. Antonio Dixar (de Hijar) goes backwards and forwards to the galleys, and although nothing has been settled yet, great hopes are entertained that ere long an agreement of some kind will be made.
News has come that the Duke of Soma has been appointed Viceroy of Calabria by Lautrech, and is doing all he can to bring that province under allegiance to the French.
Recommends Juan de Urbina and the Marquis Hernando de Alarcon, both of whom are rendering great service to the Emperor. The former, besides attending to his military duties, is actually feeding and lodging numerous families and soldiers who have no other resource; whilst the latter, now confined to his bed in consequence of a fall from his horse, has been, and is still, the best man in the Council and the most valiant in the field. His Imperial Majesty might well think of them, and others, as soon as the estates of the Neapolitan barons, who went over to the French, come to be confiscated.
Fifteen Venetian galleys and one brigantine came on the 15th inst. in sight of this port. After cruising for two or three days in these waters they went towards Puzzuolo, followed by the five of Philippino Doria, there to consult and decide on what is to be done next. If their intention was only to make a strict blockade of this port, there was no need of their coming, since Philippino's galleys did it so effectually that the vessel on board of which the last courier, Domingo de Aguirre, came was miraculously saved from their clutches by a few shots from Castil del Ovo.
Will attend to the Emperor's orders and have the Provost of Valkirch (Waltkirk) presented for the see of Malta; but, being at Naples, he can only do it by means of a proxy; besides which, were he himself at the Papal Court he could not do much, as the Provost has not remitted the money required for the expedition of the bulls. Will, however, write to Juan Antonio Muxetula, as soon as the opportunity offers, and enclose him copy of the Imperial letter. The Pope, by the last accounts, had resolved to move on the 2nd inst. to Viterbo, but nothing was said yet of his going to Rome.—Naples, 8th June 1528.
Signed: "Perez."
Addressed: "To His Sacred, Imperial, and Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1528. Perez. Naples. 8th June."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering between the lines and on the margins. (fn. n10) pp. 3½.
11 June. 449. The Prince of Orange to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 404.
Encloses petition of Cesare Plantedia di Cosenza, servant of the late Marquis of Pescara, who asks for the confirmation of the offices, "mastro de banca de Lanzano (Lanciano)," and "vicesecreto et dehanero de Ortona ad mare, e porto de Sancto Vito," conferred on him by the late Don Ugo de Moncada. Recommends the petitioner as a man sincerely attached to the Emperor, and one who has done good service.—Da la Cita sua di Napoli, 11th June 1528.
Signed: "Philibert de Chalon."
Addressed: "Sme., Ceæ., et Molto Cathc. Mti."
Italian. Original. 1.
12 June. 450. Secretary Perez to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 407.
Encloses duplicate of his despatches of the 3rd and 8th inst. by Pedro Davalos. The only intelligence received since is that communicated by the governor (alcayde) of Ostia, viz., that on the first the Germans were in the Bolognese, advancing by forced marches, so that it is reasonable to expect that by Saint John's day, on the 21st, they will reach the Tronto. The said governor adds that the Pope was preparing to return to Rome, whence many nobles and courtiers had left to accompany and escort him thither. This, if true, is by no means a good sign under present circumstances.
The French show no symptoms yet of raising the siege of this city, though it stands to reason that they cannot but do so in the end. When they do, it is not known yet what route they will take, for Barletta is so afflicted by the plague that hundreds of Frenchmen embark there to return to their country, and most of those who garrisoned that town and the adjoining districts have died from it. With all this a rumour has spread among them that Mons. de St. Paul (Pol) is coming from France with an army of 12,000 Switzers and 6,000 more infantry from Gascony and Picardie.
Among the captains of this Imperial army appointed by Bourbon was a Frenchman named Arrati, in whom great trust was placed, just as if he were a Spaniard. He has now been discovered to be in secret correspondence with Lautrech, to whom, they say, he had promised to desert with part of his company, though others say he had only engaged to deliver up at night the keys of a gate at which he kept guard with his company. Which of these two versions is the right one we cannot tell, but the captain is under arrest, the case is being investigated, and the culprit will be punished as he deserves.
Yesterday, Corpus Christi day, 18 galleys of the enemy came in sight of this port and began bombarding (bombardeando) the city, though they did no harm. In the afternoon the Venetian galleys went to Puzzuolo, and those of Philippino remained here. Now they say that the Count wishes to go to Genoa; (cipher;) for what purpose is not stated, though we suspect that he wants to consult his uncle Andrea about the proposed arrangement and his taking service with His Imperial Majesty.
The news which he (Perez) communicated in his last despatch about Guido Rangone having died at Aversa turns out untrue. He is alive and at that city, though he was very ill at the time that his death was announced.
All the soldiers of this Imperial army, Germans, Spaniards, and Italians, are perfectly agreed and on very good terms with each other, suffering their privations with a light heart, and determined to defend Naples to the uttermost. To meet the want of wine, which the Germans dislike more than anything, the Spaniards have willingly consented to have their houses searched, and, if any is found, to hand it over to the lansquenets, who have promised to drink water the moment that the present stock of wine is exhausted.
Alarcon is better, and expected to leave his room in a day or two.—Naples, 12th June 1528.
Signed: "Perez."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on the margins. pp. 2.
12 June. 451. The Same to the Same.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 99.
In favour of Gabriel de Çuaço, lieutenant of the company of Garci Manrique, who has always served, and is still serving, with fidelity. Begs that the knighthood of Alcantara be conferred on him.—[Naples], 12th June 1528,
Indorsed: "Relacion de diversas cartas, &c."
Spanish. Contemporary abstract. 1.
13.June. 452. Pope Clement VII. to the Emperor.
S. Pat. Re. Bul.
Suel. L. 1,
f. 130.
Sends Gonsalvo di Sangro to him as Nuncio, and begs he will set at liberty the three cardinals whom he has for upwards of seven months held prisoners in Naples, exposed to all the dangers of war and pestilence.—Viterbii, 13th June 1528.
Addressed: "Imperatori Carolo V."
Latin. Original.
13 June. 453. The College of Cardinals to the Emperor.
S. Leg. Suel.
L. 3.
B. M. Add. 28,577,
f. 250.
Begs him to set at liberty the three cardinals retained as hostages in Naples.—Viterbo, 13th June 1528.
Latin. Original. 1.
13 June. 454. The Duke of Amalfi to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 100.
Begs for such provision as may prevent the enemy from reaping laurels (ganar honra)in these parts. Hitherto they have gained no ground. Has left the position he held at Sienna, a very lucrative one, to serve under the Prince of Orange in Naples, as captain of men-at-arms and governor of Santelmo. Begs for the government of Apruczo (sic). which happens to be vacant, and also for a letter of the Prince ordering him to communicate all secret matters and admit him to his counsel.
Hears that money is hastily being collected for the ransom of the Marquis [del Guasto] and Ascanio Colonna. He [himself] will soon leave for Yscla (Ischia), to procure funds for the pay of the Germans, who threaten to go home. Since those who are in Lombardy will not come to our help, it behoves His Imperial Majesty to put an end somehow to our sufferings and tribulations.—[Naples], 13th June 1528.
Indorsed: "Relacion de diversas cartas, &c."
Spanish. Contemporary abstract .. 1.
14 June. 455. Andrea del Burgo to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 1,553,
f. 236.
Has received a letter from the Duke of Brunswick [Henry]. He is at Pontevico, and in great need of money. His men will not advance without receiving at least one half of their arrears. Hopes that the Pope will furnish him with some as a consideration for the restoration of his nephew to Florence, but perhaps he dares not declare himself yet. The Duke of Brunswick, on the other hand, points out the danger of delay. Antonio de Leyva, &c.—Mantua, 14th June 1528.
Italian. Original. 1.
14 June. 456. Philibert de Chalon to the Emperor.
S. E. L. The Emperor's letter of the 20th of May, informing him of the speedy arrival of Balançon with provisions for this city and army, and likewise of the order sent to Leyva to march to the relief of Naples with the new German reinforcements, has come to hand.
Believes that Balançon will have told His Imperial Majesty of the straits to which they are reduced, and how long they can hold out. Since his departure for Spain their wants have increased considerably; his men have been for the last eight days "au pain et à l' eau." For a long time there has not been either meat or wine, or money to pay the troops. His hopes of obtaining some from Gaeta, out of the produce of the wheat sold in that city by his order, or from Sicily, whither Count Burrello had been sent, have completely failed, for the day before yesterday 16 Venetian galleys joined those of Doria, making in all 22, besides two more which the latter is arming of those he captured, and a few more he expects from Genoa.
Has seen, besides, a letter from Mons. de Lautrec to the King of France, urging him to send his fleet as soon as possible. Thinks that he expects it every day along with some large ships carrying as many as 6,000 French adventurers and 3,000 lansquenets. All this put together, he cannot imagine how the succour promised by the Emperor can possibly effect a landing unless it be wonderfully large.
In this extremity he (the Prince) went to the Germans of this Imperial army and told them how welcome their services had been in past times, and what a pity it would be to lose in one day the reputation gained at the cost of so much trouble and danger. Represented to them the state of penury and want to which Fortune had reduced this army, since there only remained bread and water for their nourishment, besides their bravery, which he hoped would carry them through the present crisis. At first some outcry arose among the Germans; then, after deliberating a little while, they gave the following answer: They had never been slothful in the Emperor's service. It should never be said that for want of wine Germans had surrendered such a city as Naples to the enemy. Since it was the Emperor's intention to succour them, as he (the Prince) took care to show by his letters, they were determined to wait as long as nature could hold out. He (the Prince) was to assemble all the various nations of which the Imperial army was composed, Spaniards as well as Italians, men-at-arms and light horse, and make them swear not to abandon each other in the present extremity, but hold all together for good or bad, and defend the city to the last. Requisitions for wine should be made, and, if any was found, it should be distributed among them; if not, they would go without.
Such was the determination of the Germans. The Spaniards and the rest of the army took the required oath with very good-will, promising to do their best for the defence of this city, as they have done on all previous occasions. Their promise in writing is enclosed. (fn. n11) Neither he (the Prince) nor the soldiers can do more. They will resist as long as provisions last; but succour must needs come from the Emperor; it cannot be had from elsewhere. One month is the utmost that they can hold out, and, therefore, confidently hopes that all these brave people will not be forgotten.
Wonders why the reinforcements from Germany have not yet arrived, for it is now more than three weeks or a month since they were signalled at Pescaire (Peschiera). Hears that Leyva retains them in Lombardy. Cannot say whether the report be true or not; all he knows is that Leyva has spoken to them, and that had they chosen to advance they could have been at Rome by this time. Should they come this way the French are not certainly the sort of people to stay where they now are; if they do, they will be placed in a most dangerous position. Keeps sending them messages to advance; if they tarry [on the road] the French are sure to be reinforced, for the news is that Mons. de St. Pol is coming with a fresh army. His Imperial Majesty knows best whether this report is true or not; all he can say is that letters from Lautrech and from France also confirm the statement. In conclusion, the arrival of succour by sea is very uncertain, if the large forces the enemy has before this port be taken into consideration. If the Germans only hasten as the occasion requires they will still come in time to save us. Begs and entreats that 12 special messengers, if necessary, be sent one after the other, urging the Germans to advance; not that he thinks of surrendering to the enemy, for he can assure the Emperor that before that takes place he must have been three whole days without food.' His men, he believes, are of the same mood. The worst is that the besiegers are fortifying their camp more even than ourselves, who are shut up within these walls. Nothing, however, shall be left undone that brave people can do. In all the engagements hitherto fought with the enemy we have had the advantage, having on one occasion destroyed three companies of their men-at-arms. Hopes, with the help of God, and the Emperor's aid, to be able to accomplish some noble and glorious feat of arms.
It is the opinion of many persons better acquainted with this country than he himself is, that in case of the Imperial fleet not being strong enough to force the blockade, it might go to Sicily and land there the troops on board. These might come [to Naples] by way of Puglia and Calabria, and stop the supplies that the enemy receives from those provinces. The Emperor will decide on the best course to follow, and at any rate send brigantines and other light vessels to inform him [the Prince] of his determination.
Has heard from Philipino Doria, since the loss of the galleys, and whilst treating about the ransom of several prisoners of war made on that occasion, that his uncle Andrea is very discontented with the King of France, and is actually trying to pass over to the Imperial service, the principal reason of his discontent being that the King will not consent to Savona being united with, and dependent on, Genoa as it was before. Believes that if he (Doria) is satisfied on this point, and the liberty of Genoa ensured, besides a monthly sum for his galleys and the promise of some reward in the future, he will desert the French and embrace the Emperor's cause. With his galleys and those now being fitted out in Spain the Emperor might easily become master of the sea, which would be a great blow struck against the enemy. Vaultry (fn. n12) is now going to Genoa, under the plea of settling the amount of his ransom, but in reality to speak to him about this matter. If successful, he shall forthwith go to Spain to apprize the Emperor of the conditions, &c.
Five or six days ago a packet of letters from Lautrech to the King of France fell into our hands. Being entirely written in cipher they could not at first be read, but yesterday a clerk succeeded in deciphering them. The substance is that Lautrech asks for money to pay his men, to whom, he says, considerable arrears are owing, begging that in future monthly provision be made for 260,000 livres, which is the total amount of pay. He also asks for 6,000 more men, one half to be German lansquenets, and the other Frenchmen, the whole force to embark at Marseilles and come here by sea. He asks, moreover, 12,000 infantry, lansquenets and Switzers, with 400 or 500 men-at-arms, to look after and oppose the Germans lately come on the Imperial side, with sufficient money and stores of provisions to keep the whole force. From this His Imperial Majesty must conclude that the King of France is likely to spare no trouble or expense to become the master of all Italy.
There was besides in Lautrech's letter a paragraph in answer to certain instructions received from his King respecting the claims of Venice to certain towns and territories in this kingdom of Naples. It appears that King Francis had instructed him not to allow the Venetians to get hold of several towns here, which, they pretended, had belonged to them in former times. If already in possession of some of them, he (Lautrech) was not to suffer any further appropriation of territory. Lautrech's answer was that the Venetians were ill-contented on account of his having hitherto taken possession of the country in the name of France, which they (the Venetians) had opposed and protested against, saying it was contrary to the treaty of the League, which stipulated that all conquests in Naples should be equally divided between France and Venice.
Among the intercepted letters there was one from the French ambassadors at the Papal Court to Lautrech, informing him of the tempting offers they had made to the Pope it he would declare for the League. The Pope's answer was that he could not do what they demanded of him, but would be able, as it was, to do as much for the cause of their King as by openly declaring in favour of the League. The ambassadors had promised to have Ravenna and Cervia, which the Venetians still retain, restored to him. If the Signory refused, the King, after settling his Italian affairs, would conjointly with the Pope declare war against them, and compel them to do it. The matter, however, was to remain a secret between them, lest the Venetians should desert the League and go over to His Imperial Majesty. Will try to have the Venetians acquainted with these intrigues of the French as, soon as possible. Has already shown the letter to Cardinal Pisani, who not only thought the whole thing very strange, but wrote to his father, the proveditor at Lautrech's camp, to send him a, trusty person, to whom he might communicate matters important to the Signory's welfare.
Has written many times by Juan de Urbina. Since his departure Balançon has arrived, and therefore the Emperor must know by this time what his wishes are. Begs the Emperor to grant his request, for certainly he is one of the most faithful servants he has, sparing neither his person nor his means in the Imperial service. Besides the 3,000 cr. which he lent some time ago to help us to pay the Spaniards, he procured 2,000 more for the Germans who mutinied only the other day. (fn. n13) —Naples, 14th June 1528.
Signed: "Philibert de Chalon."
French. Original. pp. 5.
14 June. 457. Lope de Soria to Alonso Sanchez.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 42,
f. 414.
Has received letters from Naples of the 2nd inst. At that date the besieged were going on well, whilst in the French camp hundreds died every day. The Germans under Lautrech had withdrawn two miles from Naples, for fear of contagion, and fortified themselves at the "Montagnetta," not far from Pozzo Reale. It was not true that the Marquis of Saluzzo had died of the plague, as reported, but Lautrech was really suffering from it.
Luigi Gonzaga with his light horse had laid an ambush, into which Mons. Dauberrin (d' Auberrin) and his company of menat-arms had fallen, when every one of them, including their captain, was either slain or taken prisoner.
Count Burrello had gone to Sicily, thence to cross over to Calabria, with some companies of Spanish infantry. The Prince of Bisignano was already there molesting the French, and Cardinal Colonna also was doing great execution.—La Mirandola, 14th June 1528.
Spanish. Contemporary copy. 1.
14 June. 458. Secretary Perez to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 42,
f. 409.
In one of Lautrech's letter to the King, the deciphering of which he (Perez) has had occasion to read, he urgently recommends the remittance of 400,000, which he says are wanted for the pay of his troops, as well as all of other pensioners (pensionarios). and of 12,000 Switzers and 6,000 other foot, besides 500 men-at-arms, which he considers indispensable to preserve his conquests and maintain his position. Without such a reinforcement, he says, everything will be irretrievably lost.
Some of the prisoners of war who were at Genoa have come back. They say that Ascanio Colonna and the Marquis del Guasto have settled their ransom with Andrea Doria at 25,000 ducats each. The King of France offered a good deal more for them, but Andrea refused to comply with his wishes.
The Venetian and Genoese galleys in the meantime are closing the blockade as much as they can.
Secretary Seron is still a prisoner with Lautrech. What he wants of him nobody can tell.—Naples, 15th June 1528.
Signed: "Perez."
Addressed: "To the most Sacred, Imperial, and Catholic Majesty."
Indorsed: "To the King. 1528. Naples. Perez. 12th June."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on the margins. pp. 1¼.
15 June. 459. Count of Noya to the Emperor.
M. Re. Ac. d. Hist.
Salazar, A. 43,
f. 101.
Taranto defends itself gallantly, though with great loss to its inhabitants, and without any assistance from the Emperor's ministers, who have entirely forgotten us. Had it not been for the Prince of Bisignano and the Viceroy of Sicily, who have done their best, the city would have been obliged to open its gates to the French.—Taranto, 15th June 1528.
Indorsed: "Relacion de diversas cartas, &c."
Spanish. Contemporary abstract.


  • n1. Don Martin Alfonso de Cordoba y Velasco, first Count of Alcaudeto.
  • n2. See above, No. 437, p. 694.
  • n3. Afterwards called Dauberrin.
  • n4. This paragraph is not in the duplicate of this despatch at fol. 389.
  • n5. Sigismondo, 435. See p. 693.
  • n6. This paragraph in cipher to the end of the letter is an addition to the duplicate, fol. 389.
  • n7. No. 441, p. 697.
  • n8. Paolo Luzzasco.
  • n9. Rodamonte?
  • n10. Duplicate at fol. 401.
  • n11. Not in the bundle.
  • n12. The same individual called Bauri and Bauberi by the Spaniards. See the despatches of Moncada, Perez, and others. His real name was Rup Waury.
  • n13. A French translation of this letter, which was originally written in French, is at Simancas Est. Leg. 848; but this abstract has been made upon the copy at Bruxels, as printed in Lanz, Correspondenz des Kaisers Karl V., vol. i. p. 270.