Spain: December 1529, 1-10

Pages 337-363

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 4 Part 1, Henry VIII, 1529-1530. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1879.

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December 1529, 1-10

—Dec. 221. The Emperor's Instructions to Luis Sarmiento. (fn. n1)
S.E.L. 17, f. 18.
B. M. Add. 28,579,
f. 292.
Is to inform the Empress and the President [of the Council] of all that has passed [here].
To bring back with him the greatest sum of money that can be raised in Castille.
Spanish. Original draft.
6 Dec. 222. King Henry to the Emperor.
K. u. K. Haus-
c. 22, No. 62.
Has made a full answer to the mission brought by the Sieur de Myngaval (sic), one of the Emperor's chamberlains. —A nostre manoir de Westmonstier, 6th December 1529.
Signed: "Henry."
French. Original. p. 1.
6 Dec. 223. The Same to the Same.
K. u. K. Haus-
c. 22, No. 63.
The Emperor's letters presented by the Sieur de Rosymboz by Chappuis, his Master of Requests, and by Mr. Jehan de la Sauche, (fn. n2) his secretary, have been duly received. Has fully understood the object of their mission, which is the ratification of the treaty of Cambray.—Westmonstier, 6th December 1529.
Signed: "Henry."
French. Original. p. 1.
6 Dec. 224. Eustace Chapuys to the Emperor.
K. u. K. Haus-
c. 226, No. 28.
I should have thought, as I had the honour to inform Your Majesty in my last despatch, that Mons. de Mingoval could not have been detained much longer here considering the alacrity with which, soon after his arrival, he and I were received, and the promise then made to us that our business should be immediately attended to. Yet up to this day nothing has been done, the King and the Duke excusing themselves with want of time, and pressure of other business, as if they wished to make us accept the meagre and unsatisfactory conference then held as a definitive answer to our representations. Notwithstanding all their excuses, I cannot help thinking there must be some other cause for the delay, and that most likely they have kept the said Sieur de Mingoval so long waiting for no other purpose than for him to witness the solemn ceremony of taking the oath on St. Andrew's Day, or perhaps because they are expecting news from abroad. However this may be, it seems altogether a very mysterious affair, for if they had made up their mind as they said, as to the answer they were about to make in writing, why not have had it drawn up at once, and forwarded to Mingoval to take home ? I have not yet been able to discover the cause of such unaccountable delay, but have no doubt that ere long something will transpire to clear up the mystery. At first I confess I was not at all sorry for it, and would willingly have waited a score of days in the hope of being able in the meantime to give information to those who take an interest in this affair, (fn. n3) and also wait for Mr. de Rosymboz, whose .arrival with fresh instructions would most likely help to the better issue of the business in contemplation. The answer, however unsatisfactory, has come at last, and Mr. de Mingoval is to be the bearer of it. The King persists in his first resolution, still using the very same arguments, but adding occasionally new ones in support of his reasoning. But as Mr. de Mingoval will shortly take his departure, and cannot fail verbally to acquaint Your Majesty with all incidents and circumstances of this negociation, I shall limit myself to a short account of the transaction.
The very same day of Mr. de Mingoval's arrival the King's excuse at the audience was, as I have already informed Your Majesty, that he could not possibly grant the help required owing to the great distance of the countries invaded by the Turk, and besides, that affairs in Hungary, had come to such a pass, and the two armies were so close to each other that without fail the contest would be over, and the thing decided one way or the other long before any succour could be sent from other countries, and especially from England, which was far away from the seat of war. That was, he added, supposing the Turk had not raised the siege [of Vienna], for if he had, as reported, there was no longer occasion for help except it were for a formal undertaking against the Turk, to follow him up to his very dominions. This last, he said, was principally Your Majesty's concern, as the greatest prince in Christendom, an emperor, who had always his forces ready at hand, and in sight of the enemy; which forces, he observed, had much better be employed against the Turk than against the Christians, and for the defence and preservation of your own patrimonial dominions and those of your brother (Ferdinand). In this line of conduct there was both profit and honour to be gained, and therefore Your Majesty, he said, ought to lead the way. As to him, he was a small king in the corner [of Europe], far away from the rest of the Christian princes, and almost powerless to help in such enterprizes, for even if he did assist on this occasion to the utmost of his ability, the Emperor would find that without the concurrence of some other Christian princes his succour would be of little or no avail. Besides, on no account would he be the first in an undertaking of this sort; though when other princes joined he would certainly not be the last. But if the Turk, as he understood, had raised the siege of Vienna, and retreated to his own dominions, the affair was not one to be treated individually and with such haste, but rather to be decided after mature deliberation, and with the common consent of all the Christian princes, so as to plan and concert a good undertaking against that Infidel. His brother, the king of France, had opened the way by his grand and magnificent offer of 50,000 infantry and a good number of men-at-arms, whom he proposed to lead in person, provided a decent sum should be deducted from the amount he is bound to pay by the treaty of Cambray, which offer, after all, observed the King, is not an offer to be disdained, and yet I know not that the Emperor has accepted it.
To these arguments I replied that his excuses were inadmissible. First of all, the distance could nowise be an objection since the succour asked from him was not in men but in money. He himself had told me upon a previous occasion that Germany was the country which could at all times furnish a greater number of men strong in frame, dexterous, and well trained to arms, and so it was; Your Majesty, therefore, did not want that sort of help. What he wanted was money, and that could be procured immediately by sound bills of exchange drawn upon bankers and merchants on the Continent. For that he (the King) had not far to go, since plenty of merchants would be found in this city of London willing to advance him any sums, however considerable. As to his excuse, that he had no money at his disposal, that was a sort of thing which I could not be brought to believe; he had always been considered the richest prince in Christendom, and it would be rather difficult to persuade people that he was not. Even supposing he had no money at present he had means at hand to raise any sum, however considerable, especially for such a holy undertaking as the Turkish war, were it only on the property of the ecclesiastics in his dominions, whom, as I perceived, he was treating with more than Papal authority. To say that Your Majesty ought to begin first and lead the way, as the Prince most interested in the affair, must certainly be granted, and that has been done in every way. His Majesty, the Emperor, I said, has already sent succour of every sort in men and money, so as to enable his brother, the king of Hungary, to resist the Turk. He himself would have gone much sooner to his assistance had it not been for the very many troubles and disturbances raised against him on all sides, as he (the King) was well aware. Indeed, the principal cause of Your Majesty's journey to Italy had been your wish to fight the enemy of the Faith, and pacify Christendom. No better or shorter road could have been taken to go to Germany and fight the Turk unless they wanted Your Majesty to fly through the air. The enterprize, such as it was, could not be achieved without landing in Italy first, and quelling its dissensions, for it would have been a very imprudent act to attack an enemy outside the house leaving another no less formidable at home.
As to his alleging that he was not to be the first and that others might and ought to begin, I had already stated that it was no valid excuse, for Your Majesty had in fact begun by sending men and money to his brother, and preparing to march against the Turk in person. The king of France had perhaps a more plausible excuse than himself for not contributing towards the expenses of the war, for after all, what with the losses he had sustained, and the sums he was bound to pay for the ransom of his sons, he could not be expected to have much money at his command. Even supposing that the Turk had retreated to his own dominions—of which I had no certain intelligence—that certainly ought to be no excuse for delaying his co-operation in the enterprize, for there was a strong presumption that, being master, as he was, of almost the whole of Hungary, the Infidel would not have raised the siege [of Vienna], or otherwise removed his camp, except to get fresh supplies of men, provisions, and all kinds of ammunition, with which to return again and make a fresh attack upon Christian territory. That being the case Your Majesty's brother might with some good assistance in money follow up his success, and surprise the enemy in their discomfiture, which after all is no small one, considering the losses they have sustained, their shameful retreat, their insolence, cruelty, and the ravages they have committed in the country, and which has rendered their very name hateful. So favourable are the present circumstances (I added) for taking the offensive against the Turk that one ducat now would be of more service than 100 at other times. He (the King) ought to consider that the force now collected in Germany, as reported, was very considerable; no larger one had been got together for the last 300 years. If dissolved for want of pay it would be rather difficult to persuade the men to serve again; the opportunity would pass away without any profit to Christendom, and when again wanted for a similar purpose the Germans might refuse to take up arms. The loss of such an opportunity as the present might, indeed, have the worst consequences for Christianity, and be in future a source of deep regret. True, time and mature deliberation were needed for an undertaking of this sort. Such was, I added, Your Majesty's private opinion, and as a proof you had sent me to request that the English ambassadors should proceed to Boulogne as soon as possible, there to discuss the matter and deliberate as to the best means of carrying the projected enterprize into effect. But great care should be taken by both princes lest, whilst discussing the plan of the future campaign the Turk should finally retreat into his own dominions, and become almost invulnerable, just as did the Romans, who, whilst deliberating about the relief of Saguntum, allowed that city to be taken [by the Carthaginians].
With regard to the offers made by the king of France that was not a thing of the moment, for his assistance, if required and accepted, could not be got ready in so short a time as wanted under present circumstances. Besides, if it were allowable for a lawyer, like myself, (fn. n4) to express an opinion on military matters, I should venture to say that, even in case of France allowing her king to take a personal share in this Turkish war—which is more than improbable—it seemed to me highly inconvenient and dangerous that there should be more than one general in command of the forces, for apart from Roman history, in which several cases occurred of battles being lost either through the dissensions of the two consuls in command of their armies, or because one of them, too ambitious for glory, chose to attack the enemy with his own forces without the co-operation of his colleague, I might quote several cases in modern times, as for instance that of king Wladislas of Hungary, (fn. n5) who was principally defeated, and lost his life [at Mohatz], owing to there being in his camp several captains commanding troops of various nations, and princes, each of whom wished to carry off victory by himself, thereby causing the ruin of all. As to the offer itself, I refrained from making any observations; he (the King) might consider whether it was acceptable or not.
The King could not help admitting that I was right in supposing that France would not easily consent to her king going personally upon such an expedition; and then, returning to his own allegations and excuses, said: "Bills of exchange cannot be procured and made out as soon as you imagine, and I myself have not the means. If the expenses incurred in the last war were to be a sufficient excuse for others not to contribute now towards the Turkish expedition, I ought certainly to be left scot free like other princes, for I have spent a good deal of money as did the rest besides the sums I have lent right and left. As to the ecclesiastics of my kingdom, I really believe that they will not consent to devote any portion of their property to that purpose."
In short, after a good deal of discussion on these points, the King summed up the above arguments and said: "I cannot well look to everything; I will communicate with my Council, and you shall have soon a definitive answer in writing." Upon which, after earnestly requesting him to attend to this business as the emergency of the case required, and his own royal dignity and reputation demanded, Mr. de Mingoval and I took leave of him, and prepared to leave the room. Then the King took my colleague apart, asked him whether he had anything more to say, and gave him all manner of messages and commendations for Your Majesty, which he himself will transmit verbally.
Whilst the King was thus conversing with the said Mr. de Mingoval, I approached the Duke of Norpholc, who was close by in the room, and who, as I have already informed Your Majesty, told me distinctly on a previous occasion that he was disposed to help us in this matter of the Turk. I reminded him of his promise. We then left the room.
The above conference took place on a Saturday. Next day the King dined with the Queen, and whilst at table alluded to the affair, saying: that if the Christian princes agreed to support this undertaking against the Turk, he (the King) would do wonders. But as to Your Majesty's application for assistance [in money], that was quite a different affair, as he considered it a foolish and highly improper thing (simplesse et messeance) for king Henry of England to remit money to Your Majesty and help him to keep no less than three armies in Italy, which, in his opinion, ought to be elsewhere. On the ensuing Saturday, the 20th ulto, at the hour of evening, Mr. de Rosymboz and Mr. Jehan de le Sauch (fn. n6) arrived, and were received as Your Majesty will hear from Mr. de Mingoval. They were summoned to Court on the eve of Saint Katharine's Day, that is to say, on the 23rd. After the customary commendations and compliments by Mr. de Rosymboz, and exhibition of credentials and letters by his colleague, Mr. Jehan [le Sauch], I addressed the King, and said that we begged to be excused for the ratification of the treaty [of Cambray] not having come [to England] sooner. One of the causes for the delay had been that it was not known [in Flanders] whether he felt disposed to sign it first, or wait until his ambassadors had reached Boulogne, so that the oath there and here might be taken at the same time. Also that Mr. Jehan de le Sauch had been occupied in the restitution by France of the town of Esdin (Hesdin). The King might easily see by the date of the ratification and that of the instructions that it had not been in Your Majesty's power to forward it sooner. There was no doubt (I added) that Your Majesty had always held his friendship and alliance, so long continued from father to son, in greater esteem than that of any other prince in the world, and the proof was that Your Majesty had been exceedingly pleased at the reconciliation or making up of matters, if I might so call it, which had lately taken place; for, although there might have been causes for mutual disagreement the affection of the heart was never alienated (fn. n7), at least on Your Majesty's side, who had the same opinion respecting him. He, therefore, might feel sure that his ratification had been the first ordered to be got ready and drawn out for Your Majesty's inspection, and that had his ambassadors been present at Court Your Majesty would, without any further delay or waiting for the oath of the French king, principally concerned in the treaty, taken at once his solemn oath to observe the stipulations of the treaty. To this I added many other complimentary and flattering words, which I have no doubt Mr. de Mingoval, who assisted at the conference, will report when in Your Imperial presence.
After this, in pursuance of Madame's orders and according to the instructions lately brought by Mr. de Rosymboz and Le Sauch, and in which I was also included, I proceeded to inform the King that an agreement had been made at Cambray between the two ladies (Louise de Savoie and Margaret of Austria) independently, and, as it were, outside of the treaty, that in order to correct certain abuses in the shipping and barter of merchandize, it was desirable that he (the King) should send commissioners to Bruges, or some other city in Flanders, and that Madame should also send hers, that they might conjointly correct the abuses lately introduced, and do away with all causes of discontent which might hereafter give rise to dissension and misunderstanding between the two countries.
Having said this much, I again alluded to the Turkish affair, about which Mr. de Mingoval, who was also present, and we three hoped to get a less unsatisfactory answer than that given at former conferences. We were all mistaken, for having told him that the news about the retreat of the Turk were contradictory, and most likely invented by parties who wished to lull the Christian princes, so that they might not take offence, I shewed him an abstract of the letter which the king of Hungary had written in his own hand to Madame about it. I then begged his pardon for not having communicated the information in the first instance, and when the subject was noted at the first conference. It was no fault of mine or of Madame, who was always ready to impart any news that might interest him and the rest of the Christian princes: it was not from any diplomatic cause or because Your Majesty or Madame wished to conceal anything from him. The abstract came within a letter addressed to Mr. de Rosymboz, which arrived many days before that ambassador made his appearance in London, and which, of course, I dared not open and read until he came.
Upon which the King took the paper into Ms hand, perused it, and began in the most pleasing and agreeable tone of voice to discourse on the great satisfaction and pleasure this peace had caused him, which, he observed, was very advantageous for the whole of Christendom, and particularly for Your Majesty, and for him on account of the old friendship and the intercourse of trade between their respective dominions. With respect to the ratification of the treaty, he was ready to sign and swear to it at once in due form. Had I come to him sooner he would have signed immediately, for as soon as he heard of the ratification being already in Flanders he offered to take the oath, and do his duty in that respect without waiting for his ambassadors to reach the Imperial court. Respecting my assertion that Your Majesty never could imagine the slight differences which had once existed between them to have had their origin in hatred and ill-will, I had stated (he said) the plain truth. Had he been actuated by such motives he might have acted differently than he had done, as Your Majesty was no doubt aware. As to the Turk and the assistance demanded from him, he could only say that he wished his kingdom was so placed that he could employ all his forces against him, or lead his own army, in person, which was of all things that which he had most desired from his infancy. With regard to the money which Your Majesty had asked him to furnish, he could only say that he had consulted his Privy Council, and his Parliament also, and had found that he could not possibly grant it for three reasons. The first was that it might very well happen that the said monies, if furnished, would be turned to another use, and instead of being spent in war with the Turk would be employed to feed or promote discussion among Christian princes. The second was that both he (the King) and his Privy Council and Parliament also thought it very strange that an application for help should be made to him and other Christian princes at a time and in a matter which concerned principally, if not exclusively, your own brother the king of Hungary, and your patrimonial estates. Your Majesty, he added, was the head of Christendom, the most powerful prince [in Europe], he who has most means at his command to furnish such aid, and yet up to the present no signs had been given that it was your intention to afford any such assistance and help, which, in his opinion, would have been far more profitable and honest a course to pursue than to continue waging war on Christians, as Your Majesty was still doing. The third, and last, was that so much money had lately gone out of his kingdom in various ways that there was none left now to apply to the said purpose, as his Parliament had lately represented to him; besides which, the clergy of his dominions had already contributed on many occasions with large sums, in the shape of annats, to be spent as it was said in the Turkish war, and therefore it was for the Pope, who had received the money, to refund it, and get ready the assistance now required.
My reply, after using some expressions of reciprocal courtesy concerning this last peace, was that I was sorry to see by his answer that he had completely misunderstood me, or rather that I had not expressed myself clearly enough. I never meant that the money applied for was to be sent directly to Your Majesty, as I saw by his answer that he understood, but to Hungary, not elsewhere. As to his fear that it might be used against Christians, none could be entertained on that account as long as your army remained in those distant quarters; besides which, such misappropriation of his funds, as he seemed to fear, might easily have been avoided by deputing accountants and other fit persons to deliver the said money, and see that it was spent according to his own wishes and intentions. To his observation, that Your Majesty, notwithstanding his protestations, had not yet given any signs of his readiness to assist your brother of Hungary, I could not help replying with what I had said before. Your Majesty had hitherto done all you could for the pacification of Italy, without which, as the king of France had lately observed to Mr. de Mingoval there present, it was impossible for Your Majesty to go to your brother's assistance, as you fully intended, for were you to do so and leave an enemy behind you greater risk might be run than was generally thought. That this last consideration, and perhaps also the hope that at the conferences of Boulogne something might be done in favour of the enterprize, had influenced Your Majesty to stay in Italy longer than was at first anticipated; otherwise you would be already in the heart of Germany, whither Mr. de Mingoval had been directed to return with the answer. In short, that though Your Majesty had not yet been able to go thither in person at the head of your armies, the help in money had not been wanting, for since my departure from Spain no less than 400,000 or perhaps 500,000 ducats had been remitted; which assertion could be easily proved by the fact that the King, your brother, would never have been able with the sole revenues of his kingdom, which were by no means considerable, and without your aid, to support the expenses of this war. As to the annats, or first fruits, it was a well known fact that they were first instituted to defray the expenses of expeditions against the Infidel. To ask the Pope to refund the money received for such a purpose would be unjust and unreasonable, for he might allege that he had spent it all at the instigation of the confederates in the last Holy League, which would be a sufficient excuse for him, and an accusation against those who made part of the said League, and also against him (the King) who, though not named in the treaty, virtually belonged to it. In future some provision might be made to prevent the funds so collected from being spent otherwise than in war against the Infidel, but at present the urgency was such that no appeal to the Annats' Chamber would be of any use.
Hearing this the King seemed inclined to reply and sum up his argument, but perceiving, no doubt, that reason was entirely on my side, whilst he only had on his unwillingness to grant our demand, he concluded by saying that he would soon give a full answer in writing for Mr. de Mingoval to take to Your Majesty.
With regard to the intercourse of trade, the inspection of the documents relating to the ratification, and other like matters in hand, the King referred us to his Chancellor (Thomas More) and to the Bishop of London (Tunstall), who, he said, would attend to our business. Accordingly on the following day, which was St. Katharine's, Mr. Jehan de le Sauch called at the Chancellor's lodgings, and met there the Bishop of London and a doctor, who was one of the King's secretaries. After a minute inspection of the papers, some objection was raised as to the form of the ratification, which, however, we were told would be no impediment, to the King's signing and taking his oath on the following Sunday, provided we promised to produce afterwards the ratification deed under a different form. As the alterations which they wish to introduce affect more the form than the substance of the ratification we have consented, and written to Mr. de Granvelle to acquaint him with the fact.
With regard to the intercourse of trade, the Chancellor and his two assistants, the bishop and the secretary, told us that in their opinion there was no necessity to make any change, for traffic had been carried on according to certain provisional rules of very long standing, and if the said rules had been observed for many years past, and had worked practically well—notwithstanding that the princes themselves had not always been on the best terms—it was natural to suppose that, union and friendship being re-established between them, no dangerous innovation or abuse would be introduced that could not be immediately removed, and no wrong done to private individuals that could not be repaired on either side by application to a court of Law without the trouble of establishing fresh rules or making a new commercial treaty, now that a good and solid peace had been concluded, and every pains been taken to put facts in their true light. Were a new treaty to be made (they observed), people might murmur and say that the friendship between Your Majesty and the King, their master, could not be very firmly established—as befits relations and allies—if it required to be strengthened by new commercial treaties. Our answer was that neither Your Majesty nor Madame intended to express any doubts about their friendship or their willingness to keep to the letter of the treaty of Cambray; what they had done and said hitherto had no other object than the confirmation and maintenance of that friendship and alliance so as to ascertain and define the rules by which the subjects of the two nations were to live on friendly terms with each other, and carry on their mutual trade in future. For, on this matter of trade, we observed, there had been, and were still, many complaints made by Flemish and Spanish merchants, which if not attended to opportunely might have serious consequences, principally in times of peace. Formerly, and whilst the neutrality to which they had alluded lasted, it was natural that traders of both nations should be content with the existing regulations, from fear of breaking through that same neutrality; now that peace was made there was no such fear, and all looked to their private interests.
A few more things did I say to those gentlemen on the subject of the intercourse of trade and the necessity there was of its being at once established on an equal footing, but perceiving that my arguments made no impression upon them I did no longer insist, considering that enough had been done in letting them know what were Your Majesty's and Madame's wishes on that particular point. Besides, I thought at the time, and I think still, that it will be far more advantageous for Your Majesty to have this negociation postponed than commence it now, for out of consideration for the present peace it might be thought necessary to make them certain concessions, and perhaps also increase instead of curtailing the privileges of their merchants. On this account I deemed it best to leave matters as they stood, and therefore no resolution was taken one way or the other.
Sunday the 28th of October, having previously been summoned and conducted to Greenwich, as Your Majesty will hear from Mr. de Mingoval, all of us witnessed the solemn ratification of the treaty by the King, who swore faithfully to observe it, as is customary in such cases. The papers and documents relating to the whole transaction go by this post. The ceremony over, the King, who had hitherto been rather thoughtful, and by no means gay, changed countenance all of a sudden and seemed in much better spirits than I had ever seen him. Everyone present remarked it, and certainly one could see by his countenance beaming with satisfaction and joy, that he was content with himself, as if he had done a good day's work. He then came towards us and said he was marvellously glad at what had just taken place, and that it was desirable in the interests of both royal families, Your Majesty's and his, thus to ensure the tranquillity and welfare of your respective dominions, whose commercial intercourse was not only necessary but mutually indispensable, and that he hoped that since the principal part of the work was done, the remainder, if anything still remained unsettled, would be soon arranged to the common satisfaction of the parties concerned. As to himself, he would spare no trouble or fatigue to make things go straight, and if possible improve (aller de bien en mieux). Our answer was that he might be sure that Your Majesty's satisfaction and joy would be equally great, and that whatever efforts should be made on his side for the preservation of peace would not, and could not, surpass those of Your Majesty, for in such matters you recognized no superior, having always cherished more than any other prince in the World the benefits of peace, as he must have found by experience, and will no doubt find again hereafter After which the King began to excuse himself for his past behaviour towards Your Majesty, meaning no doubt the defiance and challenge made by his herald at Burgos, adding that he had been so pressed and circumvented that he had had no escape left, but that now not even sheer force should compel him to act as he had done.
The dinner at the King's table, to which we together with the French ambassador and Papal Nuncio, were invited, was a splendid one, as Mr. de Mingoval will inform Your Majesty. The King was very familiar and jovial with all of us, and never ceased, except when the music of several instruments sounded, to address us on all manner of subjects, starting questions to draw us, especially us, the Imperial ambassadors, into conversation. He asked us what news we had received of Your Majesty, and having told him that the latest we had were of the 9th of October, he said he had just received some still fresher, which advised him of Your Majesty's triumphant entry into Bologna, which he said had been one of the most solemn and magnificent that could be imagined, the Pope having received Your Majesty dressed in full pontificals, at the door of the church, accompanied by a host of prelates; among whom Your Majesty had failed to recognise the Bishop of Tarbes, owing, no doubt, to his not being dressed as an ecclesiastic, but as a civilian. That to describe the solemnities and ceremonies used on the occasion, as well as the numerous and gorgeously attired suite, who attended on Your Majesty, would take him too long, and that whoever attempted it would have enough to do. Our answer was that had his ambassadors been present at the ceremony Your Majesty would on many accounts have considered their attendance of more value than the presence of 2,000 men, with which flattering compliment the King was so much pleased that he retorted: "I am very sorry indeed that my ambassadors were not in time for the ceremony of the coronation. I think, however, that they must be in Bologna by this time, and if not I have no doubt that those I have at Rome have done their duty in this respect and paid their homage to the Emperor."
After this he began to speak about the late king Philip, Your Majesty's father, of whom he said he was never tired of talking, (fn. n8) as he had been singularly attached to him whilst alive. "I have now," he said, "his likeness in one of my rooms called Philip's room after his name, which room I prefer to all the rest in my palace, not only on account of its name, but because the said king was my godfather."
He then asked if we had any news of the Turk, and we told him that we had letters dated Nuremberg, the 11th of November, containing advices similar to those sent by the king of Hungary to Madame and differing considerably from those circulated by the French ambassador. He also inquired whether the day for the delivery of the hostages had been definitively fixed. We answered that it was to take place on the 1st day of March at the latest, and that if it could be possibly accomplished before Your Majesty would be very willing, and do everything towards it as the best course for both parties to follow under all circumstances. Upon which the King observed that he felt a particular interest in one of the French princes, not only on account of his being his godson, but because he had heard much of his precocity and talent. He had been much grieved when he heard of his dangerous illness in Spain, perhaps as much as his own father the king of France was, for this latter had an inestimable consolation in the shape of a third son. The King also spoke about the Pope, the cardinals, and other ecclesiastics, a subject to which he returned after dinner, expressing himself in rather disrespectful terms, as Your Majesty will hear hereafter. The rest of the conversation turned on the music of his chapel, both vocal and instrumental.
The dinner over the King took all of us three, namely, Mr. de Rosymboz, Mr. Jehan [de le Sauch], and myself, to a window of the Hall, and there, his countenance actually beaming with joy, began to say that as regarded the Turkish campaign he did not boast of what he might and would do; he was not one of those who made great promises and spoke very high, and when called upon to fulfil their words fell back; he invariably did more than he promised. He always imagined that Your Majesty would have taken both his crowns at Bologna—which seemed to him the fittest place for that ceremony—but in his opinion it would have been a highly meritorious act had Your Majesty declined so many vain and superfluous ceremonies as were performed on that occasion. Would to God the Pope and his cardinals had been more chary of such magnificence, and less prone to that inordinate ambition, which had been the cause and excuse for so many wars, discords, and heresies! For had they observed to the letter the precepts of the Gospel, and attended to the traditional sayings and exemplary conduct of the old fathers of the Church—several of whom the King mentioned in the course of his argumentation—they would have led a very different life, and not have scandalized by their acts and manners the whole of Christendom. In so far as this matter Luther had only told truth and preached with common applause. Had he limited himself to inveighing against the vices, abuses, and errors of the Clergy, instead of attacking the Sacraments of the Church and other Divine institutions, everyone would have followed him, and written in his favour. He, himself, should have been one, and instead of taking the trouble of refuting his arguments, would willingly have taken pen in hand in his defence. Nevertheless, though the said Luther had evidently mixed up a good deal of heresy in his books, that was not a sufficient reason for reproving and rejecting the many truths he had brought to light. As to him and the reformation of the Church in his dominions he hoped to be able, little by little, to introduce reforms, and put an end to scandal. He had already begun to do so, and had no doubt but that ere long he should accomplish his object by imposing law and establishing rules to that effect. He considered that Your Majesty, as the greatest prince in Christendom, was bound to do the same, and to promote the general reformation [of the Church]. True it was (he added) that in his opinion Your Majesty must delay the execution of this project until matters were more settled than they are now.
We thanked the King for his good counsel, and assured him that such was Your Majesty's confidence in him that in any matter, even more important than the present, you would not fail to follow his advice. Again did the King return to the subject of the Clergy, as if he wished to assert that which constitutes his chief ground of complaint against them, and is the cause of his present animadversion, for he exclaimed, addressing all of us at once: "Now, I ask you, how can the Pope grant a dispensation for an ecclesiastic to hold two bishoprics or two curacies at once if he will not allow two women to one man? for here is the point (this he said rather between his teeth): all doctors say that a dispensation in the former case is as necessary as in the other." Our answer was, that reformation was undoubtedly much wanted, and would be the best thing in the world, if accomplished in such a manner as proposed and required [by Your Majesty], and seconded by a prince like him, who to the good qualities with which he was endowed joined considerable learning in Church matters, and of whom it could not be suspected that in so doing he wished to derogate from the authority of that same Church in matters of its jurisdiction, whether of dispensation or of any other sort. He replied, and maintained that the only power which ecclesiastics had over laymen was the absolution from sin, and he went on in this manner speaking against the Pope in terms very similar to those above stated.
After which, Mr. de Rosymboz asked permission to pay his respects to the Queen, which the King willingly granted at once, though the duke of Norpholc (Norfolk) and the rest [of the councillors] made some difficulty. The permission being granted, we all called at the apartments of the Queen, whom we found in great sorrow, so much so that she could hardly suppress her tears in our presence. We told her that, according to Your Majesty's letters, Mr. de le Sauch, there present, had consulted on her case with several of the Parisian doctors, all of whom had given their opinion that it was quite impossible to dissolve the marriage, and that neither the king of France himself nor any other prince in the World had the power of making the university give a contrary opinion. This assurance, and the hope and trust which the Queen has in Your Majesty's exertions in her behalf, somewhat relieved her from her anguish, and her conntenance gladdened; but as there were many in the room she dared not say much, nor did we venture to speak to her on the subject. She, however, promised to write or let me know her wishes by private and verbal message.
And so she did, for on the following day she wrote me a letter through her physician [Fernando Victoria], explaining the King's behaviour towards her, which, she says, is still the same, and begging me to report upon it, and particularly to recommend her poor case to Your Majesty, earnestly entreating, now that you are with the Pope, to have her cause determined judicially or otherwise, that the state of tribulation and anguish in which she lives, and which (she says) has lasted far too long, may be put an end to at once, and begging also that for the love of God, and regard for Your Majesty's honour and reputation, no further delay be made in a matter which might give rise to serious inconvenience and danger for the future. Notwithstanding that her letter to Your Majesty—which goes also by this post—is full of the same prayers and commendations she has conjured me to write, as I do, in her favour.
On St. Andrew's Day, the Queen having dined with the King, said to him that she had long been suffering the pains of Purgatory on earth, and that she was very badly treated by his refusing to dine with and visit her in her apartments. The King replied: "That she had no cause to complain of bad treatment, for she was mistress in her own household, where she could do what she pleased. As to his not dining with her for some days past, the reason was that he was so much engaged with business of all kinds, owing to the Cardinal having left the affairs of government in a state of great confusion that he had enough to do to work day and night to put them to rights again. As to his visiting her in her apartments and partaking of her bed, she ought to know that he was not her legitimate husband, as innumerable doctors and canonists, all men of honour and probity, and even his own almoner, Doctor Lee, who had once known her in Spain, were ready to maintain. That many other theologians were of the same opinion, and, moreover, that he was only waiting for the opinion of the Parisian doctors, to obtain which he had lately sent Dr. Stocler (Stokesley), the same about whom I wrote to Your Majesty in my despatch of the 25th ulto. As soon (he added) as he had obtained those opinions, and others well founded upon right and canonic law, he would not fail to have them duly forwarded to Rome, and should not the Pope, in conformity with the above opinions so expressed, declare their marriage null and void, then in that case he (the King) would denounce the Pope as a heretic, and marry whom he pleased." The Queen replied that he himself, without the help of doctors, knew perfectly well that the principal cause alleged for the divorce did not really exist, "cart yl l'avoit trouvé pucelle," as he himself had owned upon more than one occasion. "As to your almoner's opinion in this matter," she continued, "I care not a straw; he is not my judge in the present case; it is for the Pope, not for him, to decide. Respecting those of other doctors, whether Parisian or from other universities, you know very well that the principal and best lawyers in England have written in my favour. Indeed, if you give me permission to procure counsel's opinion in this matter I do not hesitate to say that for each doctor or lawyer who might decide in your favour and against me, I shall find 1,000 to declare that the marriage is good and indissoluble."
After a good deal of talking and disputing on these matters the King left the room suddenly, and, as I am told by some of those present, was very disconcerted and downcast, so much so that at supper the Lady Anne noticed it, and said to him reproachfully: "Did I not tell you that whenever you disputed with the Queen she was sure to have the upper hand? I see that some fine morning you will succumb to her reasoning, and that you will cast me off. I have been waiting long, and might in the meanwhile have contracted some advantageous marriage, out of which I might have had issue, which is the greatest consolation in this world; but alas! farewell to my time and youth spent to no purpose at all."
Such, I am told, was Lady Anne's language to the King on the evening of the day that he dined with his Queen, and disputed with her as to the legitimacy of their marriage, but as Your Majesty will no doubt hear all these particulars from Mr. de Mingoval, as well as the influence the Lady exercises, and the credit she has with the King, I shall say no more on this subject, and will leave to that ambassador the care of reporting thereupon.
As Dr. Lee, the royal almoner, has positively told the King that except Your Majesty, no one else in Spain cared a straw whether this marriage was dissolved or not, the Queen wishes me to say that she would be grateful if you would make the Spanish universities write in her defence; also if the Empress [Isabella] could be persuaded to write a warm letter in her favour to this King. She thinks that were Your Majesty to give commission to the Archbishop of Toledo (Fonseca) to procure the conclusions of the said Spanish universities, her case might be considerably improved. She has written again to Madame begging her to have the same thing done at Louvain, and wherever else it may be considered expedient, as she thinks that all these measures, and others that she could suggest, are now much wanted to stop the King in his course; for he is so blind and passionate in these matters, that it is much to be feared that one of these days he will take steps which may perhaps induce his people and the Commons, on the plea of the various and contradictory opinions obtained in this matter, to consent to the divorce, though if a favourable conclusion has, as Your Majesty writes, been obtained in the Paris University, it is hardly to be presumed that anything of the sort will be attempted.
Yesterday, after dinner, Messieurs de Rosymboz, de Mingoval, and [Jehan] de le Sauch went to take leave; I accompanied them, and saw the King, who made us many flattering speeches, as is his wont; no doubt Mr. de Mingoval will report them. Among other news he communicated to us was this, that he had issued orders for the reform of the Clergy in his kingdom, whose claws he has already clipped to a considerable extent, taking away from them several taxes imposed of their own exclusive authority upon his (the King's) subjects. He was (he said) about to undertake the annats, and prevent ecclesiastics from holding more than one benefice at a time, and he concluded by making us the most splendid offers, saying that there was nothing in his dominions of which Your Majesty and Madame [of the Low Countries] could not dispose at once if you only took the trouble of asking for it. These same offers he afterwards repeated to Mr. de Mingoval in particular, as he himself will no doubt inform Your Majesty.
I forgot to mention the arrival at this court of an envoy from the Pope, whom I met yesterday in the street as he was coming from the King. He said he wanted to see me, and would call in a day or two to communicate affairs of importance. He had not yet been able to do so owing to his many engagements and the important business he had in hand. I do not yet know the exact purpose for which he comes, but this I can say for certain, that whatever his mission may be he has certainly arrived under a bad constellation.
Parliament was yesterday prorogued till after Easter. Its chief occupation has been to legislate against all classes of the Clergy, and also to remit about two millions of money which the King had borrowed. The Bill has actually passed, though it is to be apprehended that some mischief may come of it. The Cardinal, as I informed Your Majesty in my despatch of the 17th ulto, remains where he was. His son, a student at Paris, who enjoyed several ecclesiastic benefices to the amount of more than 15,000 ducats, has also been deprived of all except one of about 1,000, and the remainder has been bestowed on other people.—London, 6th December 1529.
Signed: "Eustace Chapuys."
Indorsed: "De l'ambassadeur d'Angleterre, VIo Decembre, par Mingoval."
French. Original. pp. 9.
6 Dec. 225. King Henry to the Emperor.
K. u. K. Haus-
c. 225, No. 62.
Has answered Mingoval's commission in a manner that will shew his desire for the welfare and prosperity of the Christian community at large, as he (the Emperor) will see by the report which his ambassador takes back with him.—Escript à nostre manoir de Westmonstier, 6th December 1529.
Signed: "Henry."
Countersigned: "Tuke."
French. Original. p. 1.
6 Dec. 226. The Same to the Same.
K. u. K. Haus-
c. 225, No. 63.
His letters of the 29th August brought by the Sieur de Rosymboz, his chamberlain and councillor, by his Maistre des Requêtes Eustace Chappuis (sic), and by Secretary Jehan de la Sauche (sic), his ambassadors, have come to hand. According to his wishes, the treaty concluded at Cambray between the Archduchess of Austria, duchess and countess of Burgundy, dowager of Savoy, &c., and Madame Louise de Savoie, Queen Mother of France, has been duly ratified.—Escript à nostre manoir de Westmonstier, 6th December 1529.
Signed: "Henry."
Countersigned: "Tuke."
French Original. p. 1.
8 Dec. 227. Don Martin de Salinas to the King of Hungary.
M. Re. Ac. de Hist.,
c. 71, f. 224 vo.
His Highness' letters of the 16th ulto, dated from Lintz, have come duly to hand, as well as the copies of those written by the king of France. All have been shewn to the Emperor, and the answer is being prepared for Mons. de Bredan to take back. This present one could not be ready before, owing to Mons. de Laxao (La Chaulx), who went to France for the purpose, not having yet reported on his mission.
The 40,000 ducats which the Pope has offered as help for the Turkish war are daily expected. The bankers by whom they have been accepted engage to pay the money at Lyons, as they say it is more convenient for them to do so. No money can be procured nowadays in Italy at short dates, besides which bills of exchange on Germany are more easily procured in Lyons than here. As soon as the bills are cashed the money shall be sent.
News has come that the Empress Isabella is confined of a daughter. (fn. n9) The Emperor purposes writing about it in five or six days, as soon as the answer to His Highness' last letters is ready.
(Cipher:) Spoke again to the Emperor about the ordnance and ammunition. Told him that if his intention really was, as publicly announced, to restore the Duchy to Francesco Sforza, care should be taken that he should not profit by it. The Emperor answered that the ordnance was to remain for the present in the fortresses retained as security. When the Duke's debts were paid, and the fortresses disengaged, it would be sent back to Trent.
There is no fear of the Emperor changing his determination. As soon as he is completely disengaged he will start for Germany.
(Common writing:) Miçer Andrea is laid up with the gout.—Bologna, 8th December 1529.
Spanish. Original draft. pp. 3.
9 Dec. 228. Eustace Chapuys to the Emperor.
K. u. K. Haus-
c. 225, No. 29.
On Tuesday morning, the eve of the Conception of Our Lady, Messieurs de Rosymboz and de Mingoval left this place [for Flanders]. Soon after their departure I received a message from the duke of Norfolk, inviting me (fn. n10) to supper at a house not far from my lodgings, where I was to meet other members of the present government, and high functionaries of State. And although I was not very well at the time, I accepted the invitation, firstly, to please and do honour to the company there assembled, and secondly, to complain, together with the French ambassador, of certain wrongs and injuries done to foreign merchants [in England], which it was urgent to redress before the meeting of Parliament, for the Bill once there the measure was irrevocable. As the remedy lay entirely in the Duke's hands, and depended much on his good-will, I would not let the opportunity pass, and consequently, though I did not feel very well, decided to attend the meeting. Went to the Duke's lodgings, and found him playing at the game of "la première" (fn. n11) with his guests. When he saw me enter the room he got up and left the game to come to me, saying that he was ready to attend to my business as he had no doubt I had other affairs to engage me, or perhaps was not in the habit of keeping very late hours. I begged him not to move from the table, but to go on unhesitatingly with the game, saying there was nothing so pressing either in the business I had with him or in my own habits as to make me forget the common rules of courtesy. I would leave it altogether for another occasion, and look on with great pleasure at the game in which he and the company were engaged, and I could also converse with the Papal Nuncio (Casale) there present, as I had to ask him for Italian news; upon which the Nuncio and myself retired to a corner of the room, and began discoursing about Italy. Perceiving, however, that the Nuncio went on telling me things and details of no importance, which I knew already, I stopped him short, and said that my object in taking him apart was not to inquire news of Italy, that was only a pretence; what I wanted was to hear the revelations, which, according to the promise given at St. John's, and of which I informed Your Majesty at the time, he was to make concerning his mission to the King. He answered immediately, and without my pressing him any further: That Your Majesty was the principal cause of his coming over to this country, not only to help on the Turkish enterprise in contemplation, and induce the King to join the same, but to procure, through the Pope's means, a true amity, and close intelligence between Your Majesty and the King. He (the Nuncio) had accepted this confidential mission at the request of his own brother, Sir Gregory [de Casale] who, he said, had always been sincerely attached to the Imperial service. It was he (Sir Gregory) who hearing that Your Majesty, to judge from the overtures made by the Admiral of France (Philippe Chabot), did not attach much faith to the preservation of the peace by the French, had conceived the idea and communicated it to the Pope, who approved of it. In Sir Gregory's opinion there was no better way of persuading the French to abide by the treaty of Cambray, and fulfil every one of its stipulations, and consequently of establishing a good and lasting peace, than to re-establish (reddresser) the old league and alliance between England and the Empire, and render it, if possible, still more binding. I asked him whether he had been charged to make express and particular overtures to that purpose. He told me he had not, and that the Cardinal [of York] at that time still High Chancellor of England, had told him to communicate with me without hesitation, as he had no doubt that I would advise and help him in the matter.
Perceiving, however, that he had brought no letters for me, and that the commission he said he had was not sufficiently well grounded, or else that he had not thoroughly understood its meaning; considering also that it was highly improbable that Your Majesty would have entrusted the management of such affairs to the Pope, who is more hated in this country than one might suppose, I avoided entering further upon this subject; but begged him (Casale) to communicate to me, after he had spoken to the King, what his answer was, that we might deliberate and decide upon the line of conduct to be followed, promising him not to fail on my side to apprize him with whatever came to my knowledge, or assist him in the negociation with all my power.
Perceiving that our conversation was at an end, the Duke got up from the gaming table and came to me, the Papal Nuncio retiring to a corner of the room. He was soon followed by the French ambassador, and by several foreign merchants, also present in the room, who, knowing what the subject of our conversation was likely to be—they having been expressly summoned for the purpose—approached and formed a circle round us. I then represented to the Duke the many oppressive measures against the said merchants, the principal article of which, I said, affected all of them in general, and the rest the French merchants in particular. Respecting the former article, of which I had already spoken to the King in the presence and by the advice of Mr. de Rosymboz—who had brought that special charge from the Low Countries—the Duke stated that the English had tried by all possible means to have it passed through Parliament, and made into a constitution and law of the realm, but that he himself had hitherto done everything in his power to oppose it, and would hereafter prevent as much as he could any innovation. That the Chancellor, to whom the King at our solicitation had committed the supervision of the whole affair, had not yet brought and read his report to the Privy Council; but that as soon as he did he (the Duke) would attend to it, and see that the merchants were treated as favourably as possible.
With regard to the other article, the Duke said that the ordinance of which we complained was of old standing, and had been observed for a great many years. It had been established for the purpose of preventing the larcenies of the Custom-house officers, as otherwise (fn. n12) out of 50,000 ducats the King would not get ten. If detriment there was in the measure it affected the English rather than the foreign merchants, for they bartered more merchandize than all the rest put together. As to him, he could not help saying in his official capacity as Lord High Treasurer of England that he found the measure just and would support it. Many other things did the Duke say to this purpose, the detail of which I omit not to weary Your Majesty, and also because I have reported thereupon at length in my despatches to Madame. Perceiving therefore, notwithstanding his show of affectionate friendship, that the Duke was determined not to grant our request, and also that the case concerned the French and other merchants as much as Your Majesty's subjects, I gave up the point and made room for the ambassador of that country to come forward and plead his cause. That he did in very warm terms by appealing to the treaty of perpetual peace between the two countries, and threatening that if the French merchants in England were dealt with in that manner the English would be similarly treated in France, or else that their own (the French) merchants, would not be allowed to come to England at all, to which the Duke replied: "Such a treatment of the English in France is unwarranted by any constitution or custom previous to the peace made between the two kingdoms; if attempted you know well what it may lead to, and where lies the remedy. (fn. n13) Respecting your threat of not allowing English merchants to trade with France, I maintain that the measure will be profitable rather than otherwise to our merchant." Matters were growing warm and might have become very unpleasant between the two, had I not at this moment interfered out of politeness, though, to say the truth, I should have liked to see them quarrel (fn. n14) The Duke, however cut the matter short by turning towards me and begging the French ambassador to retire as he had to entertain me in private. One could easily perceive from the ambassador's countenance when he received the above intimation that he was as little pleased with his dismissal as with the excuse alleged. However this may be, the Duke and I went to a corner of the hall and there, leaning against a sideboard (buffet), began to exchange civilities, the Duke saying a number of flattering things about my person and services to Your Majesty, and I reciprocating in the same strain. He told me, among other things, that he was exceedingly sorry that I was not Your Majesty's ambassador in England at the time when a Scottish ship was seized and condemned by the court of the Low Countries. He (the Duke) had been a heavy loser by it as it had cost him upwards of 150,000 angelots of his own money. True it was that at the request of the Dean, who resides now at Your Majesty's court, a letter had been written in his favour from Toledo, but the letter was so long coming that the ship was condemned and sold long before it arrived. Great was his regret (the Duke added) when he heard of the iniquitous sentence pronounced in his case, which had made him very angry, not against Your Majesty—of whose gracious interference in the affair he knew, nor against Madame, who had done him many favours in that as well as in other affairs—but against the judges, who, he said, had given a most iniquitous sentence. I told him in answer that there was no occasion for regret, sure as I was that if he was as willing to do Your Majesty's service as he professed, he would be soon indemnified for all his losses. After this he said to me: "I had forgotten to tell you at first, as I intended, that the King commands me to say in his name that you must not think it strange that the Flemish ambassadors who have left this court have received the customary presents on parting, whereas you have received none. It is no fault of the King, or of his ministers; but the custom in this country is to give such presents only at parting." Without, however, allowing him to finish the sentence I interrupted him by saying: "I thank the King for the cordiality he shews me, and I feel most grateful to him for not sending me any present, for had he done so I should have been in great perplexity, lest by refusing the gift I should hurt the King's feelings, or by accepting it, displease the Emperor, my master. Let us put this matter aside. I can assure you that the best present the King can make me, and that which I shall esteem most, is his continuance of the affection and friendship which he professes towards the Emperor, my master."
The Duke then proceeded to say that he was in duty bound to do service to Your Majesty for the reasons stated at our previous conference, and especially now that Your Majesty had granted him two privileges, of which one was of great value to him, whilst the other was beyond all price. The first was his pension of 1,000 ducats, of which he had already received one term or two. The other was the appointment of captain-general of the Imperial forces by sea and land, which important charge he said he prized more than all the rest of his property (le reste de ses biens), as his descendants would see that he had this high title at the same time from Your Majesty and from the King, his master; I assured him that Your Majesty had the will as well as the power to gratify him in matters of much greater importance, and that whoever could have seen through the mysteries of politics might have known that there was a time when he could have had not only the title of captain-general but the command of the Imperial forces, with actual possession of the office. The Duke said I was right and that I could thereby form an idea of the state in which the affairs of the kingdom were, and how the country had been governed before his time.
After this the Duke said to me: "Knowing your good intentions and your desire for the maintenance of this peace, as well as of the friendship and union between the Emperor and my master, I would willingly make a revelation to you were I not afraid of your repeating my words or writing to His Imperial Majesty." My answer was: "Unless what you have to say to me concerns principally the Emperor, my master, and his various estates, you may be sure that it will be as secretly kept as if you confided it to that sideboard (buffet)." His reply was that the matter was one in which his master, and principally Your Majesty, were so deeply concerned, that he hesitated to inform me of it, and would not communicate it for fear of my betraying his secret.
At last, after many entreaties on my part, the Duke said, as if he were only yielding to my importunities: "I place myself in your hands for this once. I protest (he said) on my honour and conscience that in what I am about to tell you there is no other motive or sentiment but the Emperors sole service, for if the thing were feasible, you would fly from the King not as from a friend, as he is, but as from your bitterest enemy (fn. n15) The thing is for the Emperor to permit my master to divorce the Queen, and take another wife; for I see no other remedy left if the reasons previously alleged be attended to. The King's scruples of conscience instead of abating are on the increase, chiefly owing to the opinions of men who think as he does in this matter" (as I had the honour to write to Tour Majesty by Mr. de Mingoval), "and there is nobody in this world capable of turning the current of his passion or fancy in this particular case."
I remonstrated strongly against such a proposition, and told him many things which the hasty and almost immediate departure of the messenger, bearer of this despatch, prevents my giving in full detail; hearing which, and having meditated for a while, he said: "Now let us suppose, for the sake of argument, that the remonstrances you have just addressed to me are well grounded, what will happen when the King, as he will most certainly do, takes another wife?" My reply was that such conduct could not be believed or even dreamt of, and therefore that it would be foolish on my part to tell him beforehand what the consequences of such a step might be in the end, for he (the Duke) had wisdom and experience enough to consider the case in its true light, so much so that I thought that ere long, when he had sufficiently weighed the matter, he would be the first to dissuade the King. "I really cannot see (retorted the Duke) how that can be effected, for I believe that neither time nor counsel can deter the King from his determination." After this he took me by the hand to conduct me to the supper table, and during the repast shewed me a letter from his son in very good Latin, which he desired me to read and give my opinion upon, adding that he was much pleased with the youth's proficiency and advancement in letters, as it was a very good commencement for a project which he had, and would declare to me later in the evening. And so he did, for about midnight, on my leaving the house where the French ambassador and Papal Nuncio still remained, he also left, and though there was a much shorter road to his hotel, insisted on passing by my lodgings and accompanying me thither. In the course of conversation he said to me: "I told you that I was on many accounts delighted to see my son making so much progress in his studies, and following the path of virtue, and since it is but proper that friends should communicate to each other their most secret affairs and thoughts, I do not hesitate to tell you my ideas on this subject. The King has entrusted to me the education of his bastard son, the duke of Richmond, of whom my own son may become in time preceptor and tutor (incitateur), that he may attain both knowledge and virtue, so that a friendship thus cemented promises fair to be very strong and firm, and might well be further consolidated by alliance; for the King wishes the Duke to marry one of my daughters, the other one having already been united by his command to the highest and most powerful lord of his dominions, whose name is the Sieur d'Alby (Derby). He also told me that, according to the uses of this country, the King had sold him a very rich damsel to be his son's wife. (fn. n16)
Upon which, and in order to ascertain, if possible, what truth there was in the report of the Princess's intended marriage, about which I wrote to Your Majesty on the 8th, (fn. n17) I told him that in my opinion his son would hardly consent to such a blameable act as buying a wife, when he could find plenty of nobler damsels willing to buy him. (fn. n18) To this remark, however, the Duke made no reply, for we were just then at the door of my lodgings; it was very late, and he had to go a good half league before he reached his hotel.
Respecting the Queen, matters can hardly be worse than they are at present, as Your Majesty will more fully understand through her letters and my own report which Mr. de Mingoval took to Court. Such is the blind passion of the King for the Lady [Anne] that I fear one of these days some disorderly act will take place. They will no doubt employ the means which I pointed out in my despatch of the 6th inst., perhaps, too, they will proceed in a shorter way, and without waiting for the answer from their ambassador in Italy—whose province it is to look after this business at Rome—may bring it under the discussion of this Parliament, in which I am told the majority of the members has been bribed and gained over in favour of the King. If so, whatever may be the issue of the trial at Rome, the King will go on; and if he can only obtain the consent of the Chamber on the plea that has been brought forward, he will consider himself secure and justified on all sides. I consider it, therefore, of the utmost importance that Your Majesty think at once of such expedients as it may be advisable to adopt under present circumstances. In my opinion, the best step to take would be that the Pope, now that Cardinal Campeggio—who must have perfect knowledge of the whole affair—is at Rome, should summon the theologians and doctors now at Bologna or Rome to his presence, and cause them freely to discuss before a consistory of cardinals this most important matter, in which not only the interests of the Queen, but the authority of the Holy Apostolic See are seriously compromised, so that it should be at once determined and concluded. There is no other way, it seems to me, of solving the difficulty, for should the Pope, or any other judge, without having the matter fairly discussed as above, pronounce in favour of the Queen, these people are sure to turn round and say that the sentence is unjust, for besides the suspicion and ill-will they have of the Pope and other ecclesiastical judges, they will allege that it is in their (the ecclesiastical) interest to do so, and to maintain that the Pope (Julius) could rightly give dispensation for the marriage, in order to increase by these means the authority of the Pope, and procure him money by such dispensations. (fn. n19)
If, moreover, the opinions of some universities [in Spain or Flanders] could be obtained and forwarded so as to be exhibited here (de par deça) it would greatly help us to success. I have written to Madame, who will no doubt procure shortly that of Louvain.
I must say that up to the present it never crossed my mind that the King's blindness (aveuglement) could be so great. One of the reasons besides a thousand more I had for not thinking so ill of him was, that I fancied the duke of Norfolk, as I was given to understand, was aiming at the hand of the Princess for his own son. Yet he has evidently avoided recommending such a course, no doubt the better to court Your Majesty's favour, and also for fear of the other [lady] having male children, which would deprive his son of the succession to the kingdom, all hopes of which, as Your Majesty knows, have been for a long time lost. Nevertheless, as far as may be conjectured from the above, such a consideration does not actually exist; perhaps too they intend treating the daughter as badly as the mother. Everyone sees the King so much bent upon that unfortunate union that no one actually dares contradict him, and so in order to countenance the intended alliance the father of the Lady was yesterday created an earl. (fn. n20)
The Princess is still at Windsor, and, people say, not very well treated considering her rank and birth. For the last week I have had no news from the Queen. She sent me lately a message to say that she was thinking and planning how I could go to her apartments without being noticed. I am waiting for her orders, but as to going thither openly and by daylight there is no chance just now; I should greatly displease the King, and what is more it would not profit her or Your Majesty.
The King yesterday created three earls with great solemnity; one was Mr. de Rochefort, as above; the other Milort Fualtre (fn. n21) who has married the daughter of the duke of Boquinguien (Buckingham), Norfolk's sister-in-law, and a third whose name escapes me at this moment.
To-morrow a motion is to be made in Parliament, as I have been secretly informed by the duke of Norfolk himself, that all naturalizations of foreigners granted by the Cardinal (Wolsey) without the King's sanction be revoked, which is greatly to the prejudice of those who have paid very dear for them. Also, as there seems to be a scarcity of gold in the kingdom, they want to make a law that no payment in that specie be made to foreigners, and that no Englishman leaving this country be allowed to carry away gold or silver of more value than two crowns, which seems to me the best expedient that could be invented to drive away foreigners from this island, and put a stop to trade, which, after all, is not the worst thing that could happen to their neighbours. (fn. n22) —London, 9th December 1529. Eustace Chapuys.
Signed: "Eustace Chapuys."
Addressed: "A l'Empereur."
French. Holograph, pp.
10 Dec. 229. The Empress to the Emperor.
S.E. L. 17-18,
f. 15-16.
B.M. Add. 28,579,
f. 274.
The Bishop of Ciudad Rodrigo (fn. n23) has delivered his message and asked urgently for money. It is almost impossible to obtain any in Spain, but every effort shall be made.—Madrid, 10th December 1529.


  • n1. The bishop of Ciudad Rodrigo (Don Gonzalo de Maldonado) was sent about this time on a mission to Spain, together with Sarmiento. The original draft of their instructions is without date, and is preserved at Simancas among papers of December 1529, at which time the Emperor was still at Bologna, where he stayed until the 22nd of March. Two captains of the latter family, one of the noblest in Galicia, served about this time in Italy; one Diego Sarmiento "captain de' Bisogni," or raw levies, as the Italian writers style them, who in 1530 took Empoli from Vitello and the Florentines; another, Francisco, who in 1536 commanded the Spanish infantry in Florence.
  • n2. Thus written la Sauche, thought he generally signs his name Le Sauch.
  • n3. "Tant pour informer ceux qu' estoyt necessayre." It is to be supposed that by ceux the king of Hungary and his ministers are meant, as the business alluded to is the enterprize and aid against the Turk.
  • n4. Literally a man of letters (homme de lettres), in Spanish "letrado," which at this time and long afterwards was the common appellation given to scholars bred at universities.
  • n5. The loss of the battle, where King Wladislas fell, is generally attributed to an imprudent attack made by one of his generals, a bishop in command of one of the wings.
  • n6. Written La Saux as in other despatches.
  • n7. "Tant plus avoit este joyeuse de ceste nouvelle reconciliation et racointement, si ainsy se peust appeller, veheu que les ceurs ne furent alienés de descointes, quelque facons de fere qu'il y aye cu ne quelque semblant, que ne penetra jamays jusques a' l'estomach, au moins du cousté de vostre Majesté."
  • n8. This paragraph, which is rather obscure in sense, and evidently deficient in some of its sentences, stands thus: "En apres vint a parler du Roy don Philippe (que Dieu absoulve), pere de vostre Majesté, du quel et de l'amytié qu'il luy portoit, yl ne se pouvoit souler d'en parler, et qu'il 1'avoit dans sa chambre nomme Philippe. Le quel tant pour le nom [qu'il portoit] que pource que'il fust fillieulz du dit seigneur Roy yl anoit (sic) singulieremant."
  • n9. The Infanta Doña Maria, who became in time the wife of Maximilian II.
  • n10. "Peu après leur deslougiement je fus convoyé pour le soer de me trouver en une mayson non loingtaynne de mon lougis pour collationner avec le Due de Norphole." Convoyé is no doubt an error for convyé, invited.
  • n11. The game called pharaon by the French and monte by the Spaniards, in which that card which comes out first is the winning one.
  • n12. "Pour obvier aux larrecins que l'on faysoit aux coustumes et gabelles."
  • n13. "De traytter ainsy les Angloix en France, s'il n'estoit par coustume ou constitution faytte avant la paix perpetuelle, que Ion Sçavoit asses [ou] que cella emportoit et le remede pour ce."
  • n14. "La matiere alloit desia ung peu chaudemant, si n'aves je garde de me mettre entre [les] deux, encoures me desplaysoit y'l qu'il acheverent si briefs leur dispute."
  • n15. "Cart si cella se pouvoit fere vous fuieriez du Roy non point comme d'ung vostre amy, mays comme d'ung contrayre, etplus si [se] pouvoit."
  • n16. "[] me dit pareillemant que le Roy a la coustume d'iey luy avoit vendu une bien riche damoyselle pour son filz."
  • n17. See page 325, No. 211.
  • n18. "Je luy dis que son filz ne voudroit avoer telz reproche, qu'il eust acheste une famme, comme sil ne pouvoit trouver de bien grandes maystresses qui 1'achetteront luy mesme."
  • n19. "Cart oultre la suspicion et malveulliance qu'il ont contre le pape et autres juges ecclesiastiques il diront qu'il se agist de leur prope interest, et qu'il maintiendront tousjours que le Pape peut dispenser affin que par ce moyen yl luy attribuent plus d'autorité, et qu'il aye de l'argent par telles ocasions."
  • n20. "Il na voulu conseyllier ung tel cas, tant pour gagner la faveur de votre maisste que ainsy pour crainte que lautre neust des enfants, que lay osteroint la succession du Royaume, la quelle yl ne fault avoer de lautre couste, cart lex-perance den avoer de long temps en a este perdue. Toutesfoys par ce que dessus lon peut cognoystre que ce respet ny est point, et que par avanture quil voudront ausy pauvremant traytter la fille que la mere. Tout le monde voit tant incline le Roy a ee malheur quil ny a nul contredisant et pour autonser lalliance le pair (sic) fut hier fayt conte."
  • n21. Robert Ratclyffe, Lord Viscount Fitzwalter, created earl of Sussex on this occasion.
  • n22. "Que n'est le pire que peust advenir á leur circonvoysins."
  • n23. Don Gonzalo Maldonado, from 1525 to 1530.