Spain: June 1529, 6-10

Pages 68-77

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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June 1529, 6-10

7 June. 34. The King of England to the Lady Margaret of the Low Countries.
K. u. K. Haus-
Hof-u. Staats Arch.
Wien. Rep. P.
Tres haulte et excellente princesse, nostre très chère et très ameé seur, cousine et bonne commère, &c. Since his letter of the 3rd, complaining that certain pinnaces or galleons belonging to the Emperor had committed ravages, "en nos destroietz de mer et jusques en nos quenals et marches," daily capturing fishing and other craft, and selling them in the ports of that coast, it has come to pass that instead of these piracies committed during the truce having been checked the evil increases, and the depredations continue. To prevent this orders have been given for the seizure of a pinnace from those parts, whose crew have been represented as having taken part in the above excesses. It is now detained "en nostre ville et port de Brightelmoston (Brighton)," and a judicial inquiry is being made. No final proceedings, however, shall be taken until an answer comes from her.—Wyndesort (Windsor), 7th June 1529.
Signed: "Vrē bon frē et cousin Henry." Countersigned: "Tuke."
Addressed: "A Treshaulte et excellente princesse nrē treschere et très ameé seur, cousine et bonne commère L'archiducesse daustrice, ducesse douagière de Savoye."
Indorsed: "Lettre du Roy Henri VIII. á l'archiducesse d'Autriche et comtesse de Bourgogne et ducesse douairiere de Savoye, sur les depredations commises par quelques pynaces on galeons soy disans á l'Empereur."
French. Original, pp. 2.
7 June. 35. Miçer Mai to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 848,
f. 15.
B.M. Add. 28,578,
f. 339.
Perceiving that His Holiness' intended journey [to Spain] was neither certain nor even probable at a time and under circumstances favourable to the Imperial interests, I ventured the other day, whilst conversing with Sanctiquatuor and Salviati, the only two officials at the Roman Court with whom it is possible to negociate nowadays, to utter my sentiments respecting the Pope's projected visit. Talking about the peace, I declared that in my opinion it would never be concluded, as no one took any real interest in it. I knew that His Imperial Majesty would not shut his ears to reason, as he has never done so at other times. All parties (I remarked) agreed in saying that they wished for peace; matters seemed well prepared to take definite form, and yet the negociations did not advance one step. In my opinion it was entirely the Pope's business. He ought to send out good and wise diplomatists to treat, before the interests of one or other of the parties grew too disproportionate. The person thus appointed ought to go to France and to Spain too. The Archbishop of Capua or some such a one might be named for that post. I purposely added the words "some such a one," (fn. n1) because had I mentioned him alone the suspicions of these people might have been raised.
That excellent old man, Cardinal Sanctiquatuor, immediately accepted the idea, and promised to speak to the Pope about it; not so Jacopo Salviati, who began to raise objections and start new plans. It was not difficult for me to perceive the cause. I saw plainly that the circumstance of his own son [Giovanni] having been appointed Legate to France naturally prevented his joining in the idea; but I proposed that Capua should go as Nuncio under him, which, far from diminishing the Legate's character and reputation would increase it considerably. This proposal of mine had the effect of quieting his fears, and he accordingly promised to report our conversation to the Pope.
Meanwhile I spoke to the Capuan, who happens to be now on no very good terms with these two, and begged him not to oppose me, but give me his assistance in the present undertaking. His answer was that of an honest man, and good servant of His Imperial Majesty. He said, "I will offer no opposition to your project, and yet if the plan is to be successful it is necessary that I should do so. I will feign that I dislike the commission, and accept it only at His Holiness' commands, for were they to suppose for a moment that I liked the post I should never be appointed."
However, two days after this Miçer Andrea del Burgo and I were informed that the Pope had not only received the idea badly, but had actually refused to appoint the Capuan, on the plea that he had some time ago sent to Barcelona his own "Maestro di Casa," and that he considered that quite sufficient for the purpose. "He was expecting letters from him, and besides he had no money to lay out in embassies. The Archbishop besides would meet with a very cold reception in France." Now whether this rebuke of the Pope was owing to a fit of bad humour caused by his late severe illness, or whether the proposal was not to his taste for some reason or other unknown to me, I cannot guess; certain it is that it disappointed us terribly, and made me suspect that the "Maestro di Casa" might after all not bring us back so many things as he at first promised. However this may be, lest we should throw discredit on Your Imperial Majesty and make these people believe that we were so very anxious for peace I and Burgo made no reply, and the matter was soon dropped.
Some days after this, as Salviati and the Archbishop [of Capua] were in the same room with Andrea del Burgo and me, the former, without any previous allusion to the affair, said, "If the Pope decide on sending the Archbishop [to Barcelona], he can surely go through France under a safe-conduct." Upon which the Archbishop started up and said, as the worthy and courageous person that he is, "Rather than apply for a safe-conduct I would altogether decline going to France, confident as I am that, though a vassal and servant of His Imperial Majesty, I should be received everywhere as befits a person of my rank and quality."
This answer of the Archbishop came very apropos for me to peer into that mysterious darkness of the Pope's mind, (cipher:) and ascertain whether his intentions be good or bad, and what he means by "neutrality." (fn. n2) It might also serve our plans [at Barcelona], because, even if Your Majesty was already on the road [to Italy], this would do us no harm, but on the contrary would increase our reputation with the Italian potentates; besides which, if Your Majesty has actally begun to negociate with Madame, the Regent of France, the Capuan is a person equally fit for this negociation as for that other.
Having decided in consequence to prosecute the idea, and press the matter as much as possible, I called on the Capuan and told him the probability there was of his being named, notwithstanding the Pope's first refusal. "Two things (said he to me), are required if I am to fulfil my commission conscienciously, namely, to know what is to be done, and how I am to do it." A personal interview between the Emperor and the King of France, besides being a dilatory expedient of itself, is fraught with some amount of danger, (cipher:) owing to the mutual challenges sent and accepted. We were both of the same opinion as to this, and concluded that it was far better for Madame, the Regent of France (Louise de Savoie), to go to Narbonne, and for Your Imperial Majesty to send thither his Grand Chancellor (Mercurino di Gattinara), or, in case of the latter not being fit for the task, any other personage whom Your Majesty should like to appoint. Or, again, if this proposal did not meet with the approbation of the parties, for Your Imperial Majesty to go to Perpignan, and Madame to repair also thither. The Capuan, therefore, wishes to know as soon as possible, and before he leaves for France, which of these two plans will be the more agreeable to Your Imperial Majesty that he (Schomberg) may propose it as if coming from himself. Indeed, whichever of the two is adopted by Your Majesty he (the Capuan) thinks has a good chance of success. (fn. n3) If, therefore, Your Majesty will let us know his will, a courier might be dispatched to Knight Commander Figueroa, (fn. n4) that he may apprize the Capuan of it on his passage through Genoa; or else the instructions required might be addressed to me, and (cipher:) I would transmit the same to him immediately, under the Pope's cover, by means of a private cipher concerted between ourselves beforehand. After this, and having discussed together the probabilities of a peace and the sort of conditions likely to be asked and granted, the Capuan's opinion was that the terms now proposed were nearly the same as those put forward at Burgos, when, owing to mere mutual mistrust (solo por desconfianza), the negotiations were suddenly broken off: but the same reasons (he thought) do not exist nowadays, for besides the oaths customary on such occasions, a supplementary article might be introduced into the treaty binding the two parties to turn their arms against the Turk, or make some matrimonial alliance.
At this stage of the discussion the Capuan (Schomberg) observed that on a previous occasion Your Imperial Majesty had offered the duchy of Milan as a dower for the Infanta Doña Maria, daughter of Queen Eleanor. (fn. n5) My answer was that I did not approve of such an expedient, for the circumstances were no longer the same. At that time the whole world was against Your Imperial Majesty, and although it might he said that nowadays it remains pretty much the same, and in downright opposition to our political views, yet on three points there is no longer any analogy whatever. 1st, that the confederates are actually tired of spending money; 2nd, that Your Majesty has still in his power the sons of France; and 3rd, that then Your Majesty was disarmed, but now he is powerful enough to make the world tremble at his sight. Besides which, the chance of one of Francis' sons, even the second born, being made Duke of Milan, is of so great an advantage to him that even if the King had come out victorious from the late contest, and had now the hostages in his possession, he could not possibly wish for more. Besides which, were such an agreement to be made, Queen Eleanor would most naturally favour her husband's views, and her daughter, the Infanta Doña Maria, would only do what her mother wished. The Capuan's reply to this objection of mine was that in all things there was a middle path. In his opinion Your Majesty might keep the children [of France] at his Court, and have them brought up and educated in his own palace. In the meantime the government and administration of the duchy of Milan could be organized to Your Majesty's content and best interests. There would be besides no necessity to give away the whole of the estate; a considerable portion of it might be retained to be granted in fiefs to those who have served the Empire during the last Italian wars, as proposed on a former occasion; and the remainder sold for a considerable sum of money. A clause might be introduced, purporting that in case of no male issue the whole should revert to the Empire or to whomsoever Your Majesty should designate.
Such are the ideas which the Capuan entertains on the subject. He is an excellent man and archbishop, most sincerely attached to Your Imperial Majesty, and has great experience of affairs. Jacopo Salviati has just called to announce his nomination. If so he is sure to conduct with ability and zeal the future negociations. I therefore entreat Your Majesty to send the instructions as soon as possible, and let this matter be kept a secret from the Papal Nuncio [at Barcelona], or at least let him ignore that the proposition of sending the Capuan to Spain comes from me, because if he should happen to hear of it I should make a sworn enemy of him, and I wish, for Your Majesty's sake and interest, to keep on good terms with all these people.—Rome, 7th June 1529.
Signed: "Mai."
Addressed: "To the Most Sacred, Imperial, &c."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher. Contemporary deciphering between the lines. pp. 9.
8 June. 36. The Same to the Same.
S. E. L. 848,
f. 14.
B.M. Add. 28,578.
f. 344.
The last courier came so late in the day that there was hardly time for me to decipher the letters and wait on the Pope. I saw him, however, this morning, delivered Your Majesty's letter, and read to him the whole of mine, for as it was written in cipher, and I had leisure to translate it during the night, I could easily add or suppress anything I chose, so as to improve, if possible, the state of the negociations. (Cipher:) The Capuan tells me that yesterday the Pope said to him, "I have quite made up my mind to become an Imperialist, and to live and die as such. If the Empire goes to ruin the Church also will be ruined." In confirmation of this I may add that Salviati declares to anyone who chooses to listen to him that they have all this while been friendly to the Empire, and that if he (the Pope) has delayed the declaration of his sentiments it was merely for the purpose of gaining credit for this peace, and that we shall soon see by his deeds that he was and is in earnest.
Seeing the Pope so well disposed I urged him, as I have done at other times, to declare himself, but I received the same answer as on former occasions, "I am only waiting (he said) for the return of my Nuncio." Nor was I more fortunate with regard to the steps he promised to take about the Milanese and Venetian ambassadors. Both (he said) had written home for instructions, and expected them daily. On my suggestion that the Venetian ambassador ought to be reminded of his promise, he (the Pope) sent for him, and they were closeted together for more than one hour. To-morrow, most probably, I. shall know what passed between them.
Must add that Andrea del Burgo having with my knowledge spoken to Cornaro on the subject, this cardinal, who is a thorough Venetian, gave him very good hopes, adding that as far as he himself was concerned, he would most willingly place his interests and fortune in our hands, and would not care whether he lost it all or not.
The Papal Legate in France (Salviati) writes that King Francis gave an uncourteous answer to the Venetian ambassador (Rosso), and when he could no longer conceal it announced to his courtiers the intended interview of the ladies. He cared not about sending money and men to Italy. He was about to leave Tours for Paris. All these were certainly signs of peace. Of his resolution not to send either money or men to Italy I have not failed to inform Leyva, as it will no doubt encourage his men and spread terror in the hearts of our enemies.
On the very same day news came to Rome that the confederates were threatening Bologna, in order, if possible, to detach the Pope from our alliance, and gain him over to the League. But Andrea del Burgo and I have done our best to give him courage, and he is now in very good spirits.
I have given the Capuan a private cipher of my own to be used in our correspondence, a copy of which is here enclosed for the use of the Chancellery clerks. Your Majesty may trust him implicitly, for he is a very honest man. Having requested him to name a person of trust, who may go to the Pope with any message of mine, he has designated one Pietro [Paolo] Martin, who is considered a friend to the Empire, though to me it is enough that the Capuan recommends him.
I have lately been closely watching the servant of the Archbishop of Saragossa, who is here; I find that he has applied for, and obtained, a secret audience from the Pope, but a warning from me has been conveyed in time. I have great hopes that nothing detrimental to the Imperial interests will be done.
The Pope has again complained to Miçer Andrea del Burgo of the secrecy that was observed respecting the meeting of the two ladies [at Cambray]. Our answer has been the same as on former occasions.
Pietre Vours (sic) the auditor of the Rotta, begs to be named in the "Indulto." As he is the nephew of Cardinal Tortosa, (fn. n6) and a good servant of Your Imperial Majesty, I do not hesitate to back his petition.
Whilst about to sign and close this letter (cipher:) I hear that the Pope has received a favourable answer from Venice.—Rome, 8th June 1529.
Signed: "Mai."
Addressed: "To His most Sacred, Impl., and Catholic Majesty."
Spanish. Original partly in cipher Contemporary deciphering on the margins, pp. 6.
8 June. 37. Knight Commander Suarez de Figueroa to Secretary Covos.
S. E. L. l,362,f. 9.
B.M. Add. 28,578.
f. 347.
(Cipher:) Andrea Doria is going to Barcelona. Any favours bestowed on him publicly or privately are well deserved, for certainly nothing can equal his present zeal for the Emperor's service. As all things here depend on him, owing to the authority and credit he enjoys with His Imperial Majesty, and the reputation he has gained with the Genoese, for having lately effected their freedom (fn. n7), it is important to conceal from him the Emperor's secret thoughts and any plans which the Emperor may have formed respecting the future destinies of this Signory, as well as our own wants, and those of the Spanish kingdom just now. Not that I think Doria capable of treason, but because circumstances might change altogether, and as he (Doria) is perhaps the man who has most credit with the Pope and the rest of the Italian potentates, and is in frequent communication with them, he might unintentionally do mischief. Such is the opinion of those who know most in these matters and have political experience.—Genoa, 8th June 1529.
Signed: "Gomez Suarez de Figueroa."
Spanish. Cipher. Contemporary deciphering, p. 1.
9 June. 38. Cardinal Santa Croce to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 848, f. 40.
B. M. Add. 28,578,
f. 349.
The Emperor's letters, dated Toledo, the 13th ultimo, have come to hand. (Cipher:) Master Pasquino has lately said, among other things, that this college of cardinals has been subjected to two pressures (ha recibido dos estretas): one corporal, the other spiritual. The corporal through the appointment of Medici (fn. n8), to whom the Pope gives all the vacant benefices; the spiritual, my own, because the Romans fancy they have not the same liberty to speak out their minds as they had before.
The Pope is [comprised] both in the corporal and in the spiritual sense as [Miçer Mai] the ambassador writes; that is the reason why I (Santa Croce) maintain that all the world lives now, and will live [hereafter] with the age (fn. n9). If so, it behoves us to profit by the occasion.
This morning the Pope sent for me. I showed him Your Majesty's letter and tried hard, as I always do, to convince him of Your Majesty's very catholic intentions and sentiments towards him. To say the truth, whether it be that he is well aware of them through Your Majesty's late deeds, or that time and circumstances help to bring conviction, the fact is that he still perseveres in his good purpose. The Imperial ambassadors (Mai and Burgo) having requested me to press the Pope to make some declaration of this sort, I did so, and his answer was, "Though I have quite made up my mind to accept the Emperor's offers of friendship, yet I think that this declaration of mine ought to be kept a secret for some time. My Nuncio at the Imperial Court will explain my reasons. If, however, His Majesty wishes this my intention to become public I have no objection, it shall be done."
He also told me that be had strongly advised (avia dado una streta) the Venetian ambassador to write to the Signory and engage them to come to terms with Your Imperial Majesty, and that the ambassador had raised, among others, two principal objections, first, that Venice mistrusted [Your Majesty], and secondly, that they were the allies of France. The Pope having replied, that if the Signory chose, he himself would take charge of the negociation, the ambassador had thereupon dispatched a courier to Venice, whence an answer is daily expected.
I then asked him what he thought of Your Majesty's proposed journey. He answered with great sincerity: "I believe it to be a settled thing, so much so that I am thinking of sending two cardinals to Genoa to meet him. You had better get ready, for you are to be one of them." He also added, "If the Emperor has decided to come, let it be as soon as possible, because the French are not so well prepared to oppose his coming as was thought at first, whereas if time were allowed they might make still greater preparations."—Rome, 9th June 1529.
P.S.—As the Imperial ambassador [Mai] must by this time have informed Your Majesty of His Holiness' feelings at his not having received previous notice of the meeting [of the ladies] in Flanders (fn. n10), I need not return to the subject, but to say that whenever His Holiness has complained to me of what he calls "want of attention on the part of Your Majesty," I have never failed to assure him that on no account would Your Imperial Majesty consent to anything being discussed and treated at Cambray to the prejudice of the Church; and that the Capuan's journey thither is rather for the purpose of making people believe that the Pope's voice is of some moment in the conferences (se pone algo de su casa) than for any other cause. Is very sorry to hear what the Mantuan ambassador says about the marriage of Your Majesty's daughter, but the truth is that time and circumstances are so much in our favour just now that everything is passed over (se disimula).—Date ut supra.
Spanish: "F. de Santa +."
Spanish. Original entirely in cipher. Contemporary deciphering on separate sheet, pp. 7.
10 June. 39. The Emperor to Mercurino di Gattinara, Louis de Praët, and Nicolas Perrenot. (fn. n11)
S.E.L. 1,454,f.79
B. M. Add. 28,578,
f. 353.
The Pope has just sent Girolamo, bishop of Vaison, with proposals for a general peace.
Empowers them to treat with the said bishop, and negociate so as to conclude a general peace with His Holiness Pope Clement VII. and the rest of the princes of Christendom who wish to join in it.—Barcelona, 10th June 1529.
Latin. Original draft, p. 1.
10 June 40. Knight Commander Figueroa, Imperial Ambassador in Genoa, to the Emperor.
S.E.L. 1,362, f. 14.
B. M. Add. 28,578,
f. 354.
Since the departure of Andrea Doria [for Spain] nothing has occurred in Genoa worth writing about. Letters from Venice have been received, stating that a peace has been concluded [at Cambray] between the Emperor and the Kings of France and England. Hopes that it will be a durable one, and that the interests of the Empire will not suffer through it.—Genoa, 10th June 1529.
Signed: "Gomez Suarez de Figueroa."
Addressed: "To His Sacred, Imperial, and Catholic Majesty the Emperor and King, our Lord."
Spanish. Holograph, p. 1.


  • n1. Ot'o como él
  • n2. "Porque descubririamos este negocio secreto de la mente buena ó mala del Papa, y si es neutral veriamos á que tira esta neutralidad."
  • n3. "Y piensa que ternia muchas ansas (sic) para ello."
  • n4. Gomez Suarez, the Imperial ambassador in Genoa.
  • n5. "Dixome que otra vez platicó con Vuestra Magd. de dar el ducado de Milan en dote á la Serma, hija de la Señora Reina que fue de Portugal, y tomar su dote en el patrimonio."
  • n6. Wilhelm Enckewoërt.
  • n7. "Y por que todas las cosas de aqui dependen dél con la abtoridad que tiene de Su Magt. y con el credito que tiene ganado con ellos de averlos puesto en livertud, [conviene] las cosas secretas guardallas, mayormente nuestras necesidades propias ó desos Reynos; ila cabsa desto [es] no por que crea [yo] que no se [le] podria fiar, sino por lo que pueden hacer los tiempos; y por que este es uno de los onbres que ay [que] mas inteligencias tiene con el papa y con todos los señores de Italia. Y aunque no sea con intencion de dañar los que saben [de estas cosas] mas que otros, y tienen mas partc [en la politica] asi lo scriven. V. Md. tome mi intencion, y no lo que digo."
  • n8. Cardinal Ippolito, son of Giuliano.
  • n9. " El Papa está en la corporal y spiritual como el embaxador escrive; por [lo] que yo digo que todo el mundo bive y bivirá con el tiempo. Cicrto por esto es bien aprovecharse dél."
  • n10. "Lo que el Papa a sentido y encargado de la junta de Flandes sin darsele parte."
  • n11. It would appear from the date of this letter that Praët had not yet started on his Roman embassy since he was appointed, together with Gattinara and Granvelle, to discuss the preliminaries of the treaty of peace with Clement's Nuncio at Barcelona.