Spain: January 1531, 1-10

Pages 1-17

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 4 Part 2, 1531-1533. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1882.

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January 1531, 1-10

1 Jan. 584. Eustace Chapuys to the Emperor.
K. u. K. Haus-
Hof-u.-Staats Arch.
c. 227, No. 1.
My despatch of yesterday will inform Your Majesty of events up to this day. Since then nothing new has occurred save that to-day, the 1st of January, Your Majesty's letters of the 5th and 12th ult. have come to hand. I immediately sent word to the Queen informing her of their contents. As she herself intends writing to Your Majesty about her own affairs I need not enter into more particulars, but will only refer to her own letter which goes by this post.
With regard to my relations with the Papal Nuncio they continue to be as good and cordial as ever. He will, I have no doubt, persevere in his good offices, especially after receiving the letter which Your Majesty has caused to be addressed to him, for which he reverently kisses your hands and feet. For my own part I promise to omit nothing likely to keep him sincerely attached to the Imperial service.
The death of Madame [Margaret], whom may God receive into His glory, has been much felt by the merchants of this city most of whom carry on business with Flanders. As to the King, not only has he, as I am informed, shewn pleasure at her demise; but he was heard to say, when he first received the news, that the death of the Princess was certainly no great loss for the world, and to make use of other similar expressions indicating that he was nowise affected by it. And I am not surprised, for it is a general rule with him to consider anything turning to Your Majesty's personal disadvantage as good fortune, whereas your prosperity and success are gall and wormwood to him. But as Your Majesty very wisely and magnanimously remarks in one of your letters to me, these are not things to be taken into account, inasmuch as it is only the mere impulse of his blind, detestable, and wretched passion [for the Lady] that makes him speak in so inconsiderate a manner. I fancy, however, that in future he will be more cautious and guarded in the expression of his sentiments towards Your Majesty, since he (fn. n1) has experienced the promptitude and zeal with which I take up Your Majesty's defence on every occasion, without allowing a word to pass that may be thought derogatory or injurious. Among other causes that most likely make the King glad of Madame's death, one is that he knows very well with what warmth and zeal the said Princess had taken up the affairs of the Queen, and also that she was supposed to be the principal instrument through whom the friendship of France would be maintained, which he (the King) would like to see shaken to its very foundations. Indeed one of the things which most attracted his attention and excited his curiosity, as well as that of the members of his Privy Council some time ago, was the occasional arrival of French agents at Madame's court, for when that happened they never failed to inquire of me what their mission could be, and for what purpose they went thither.
In pursuance of orders received from the Council at Malines (Mechlin), commanding me to announce to the King the death of Madame, I immediately sent one of my secretaries to the duke of Norphorc (Norfolk), acquainting him with the sad news, and begging him to communicate it to the King. His answer to my application was simply that the King had already been informed of it by his ambassadors [in Flanders]; but then he inquired very earnestly from my secretary whether it was true that Your Majesty was coming post-haste to Flanders, and that the Turk had compelled the Imperialists to raise the siege of Buda, and, last not least, where was the money which Your Majesty had received as ransom for the sons of France. To these three questions, which the Duke put in succession, my secretary replied: 1st, that he knew nothing of Your Majesty's movements; 2ndly, that the report about the Turk was untrue; instead of the king of Hungary's army raising the siege of Buda, the intelligence was that the city had been taken by our troops, and that the Vayvod (Zapolsky) had hastily taken refuge inside the citadel, and was about to capitulate for its surrender (hearing which the Duke shewed evident signs of displeasure); and 3rdly, that the ransom money was safe at Medina del Campo, in the very heart of Castille, in Spain. Upon which the Duke remarked that certainly the Spaniards would never consent to the money going out of the country. This assertion of the Duke my secretary denied completely, and explained how the Cortes of Spain had some time before made a loan to Your Majesty of a considerable sum of money, and had offered besides to transmit the same, as well as the ransom money, safely and free of cost wherever Your Majesty might be pleased to have it. Hearing this the Duke remained some time thoughtful, not knowing what to say.
I beg to be excused if I enter into such insignificant details; but having frequently received orders to inform Your Majesty of every event in this country in its most minute particulars I could not do less than mention the above facts, all tending to prove what little sensation the death of that wise and most excellent princess has produced among these people.
The Queen told me long ago—and the information has since been confirmed from other quarters—that what these people hate most, and what keeps them in constant fear, is to see that I make no efforts whatever to court them, and to gain their friendship. Accordingly the Queen has sent me word that unless I have some very important business to transact, I am to abstain as much as possible from visiting the King or his ministers, and that she will let me know when is the fit time to do so. I have, accordingly, followed her instructions, and avoided going to Greenwich for these Christmas festivals.
I beg to remind Your Majesty of my little affairs, and remain, &c.—London, 1st January 1531, "Eustace Chapuys."
P.S.—Since writing the above, a worthy man has come in haste from Greenwich assuring me that he has there heard two or three of the principal courtiers say that the King's marriage will certainly be dissolved at this next session of Parliament, and that they hope that after that the King and his friends will find the means of appeasing Your Majesty (fn. n2) I cannot guess on what foundation, however slight and frail, the said hope is made to rest, for I have always given them to understand the contrary, and will again make an express declaration to that effect before the game is up. Lady [Anne] considering herself already sure of her affair, is fiercer than a lioness. She said the other day to one of the Queen's ladies-in-waiting that she wished all the Spaniards were at the bottom of the sea. And the lady attendant having observed that she (Lady Anne) should not for the sake of the Queen's honour express such sentiments, she replied that she cared not for the Queen or any of her family, and that she would rather see her hanged than have to confess that she was her Queen and mistress. (fn. n3)
The same man has brought news that the King will come to the Tower of London the day after the Epiphany in order to inspect the artillery and ammunition there, and shew both to his own people and to foreigners that he is ready for defence. They are otherwise rather glad of Your Majesty's journey to Flanders, imagining and hoping that the King may perhaps hold an interview with you, and then and there obtain what his ambassador could not get at Bologna. But their joys and hopes are in a measure counter balanced by the fear of Your Majesty coming so near, and of the injury that might be inflicted upon them from those parts [of Flanders] should the King's application be denied. That is why, should Your Majesty order similar preparations to be made on the coast of Flanders, and the places on the frontiers to be also well provisioned, much good might be done, as it would undoubtedly inspire confidence in our friends and dread in our enemies.—London, ut supra.
Signed. " Eustace Chapuys.''
French. Holograph, pp. 4.
2 Jan. 585. The president of Valladolid to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 22, f. 134. Your Majesty's letter and warrant of the 30th September ult. came to hand 20 days after I and the judges of this Chancery Court had forwarded to the Empress our written opinions on the divorce case. No title or preamble was affixed to the said opinions to shew that they had been made out by Your Majesty's commands; but every argument is therein adduced both from Common and Divine Law, to prove the truth and justice of Her Highness' case.—Valladolid, 2nd January 1531.
Signed: " P. Episcopus Pacensis." (fn. n4)
Spanish. Original draft. pp. 1½.
3 Jan. 586. The Emperor to his sister Mart, widow of the king of Hungary.
Lanz. I., 416. Since my departure from Spires I have received your letter by Mr. de Bredan, and listened to what he had to say in your name. My answer went immediately by the same messenger that I might remove all your doubts and scruples. Did not then write fully, or acquaint you with the death of Madame Margaret, our common aunt, because I presumed that you knew of it through the King, our brother, besides which the subject was too painful to be mentioned again. I have, indeed, sustained a great loss, greater than any other monarch and near relation could possibly sustain, especially in what concerns the government of the Low Countries, which had been for so many years entrusted to her care. Thinking, as I do, that you, my dear sister, are the only princess capable of replacing her under present circumstances, I beg you to accept this charge, and come to me as soon as possible that we may both confer on many points which could not be sufficiently explained in writing. Had I thought that the death of our beloved aunt [Margaret] would have happened so suddenly, I should certainly, before quitting Augsburgh, have explained my views in that respect, without letting you go so far to have to return so soon, and should from the first have signified in writing my intentions, which are still the same; but I wanted first to hear the advice of my councillors, and consult the will of my subjects in the Low Countries, which has been done, so that there remains nothing more for me to do than again beg you will accept the government of those countries whereby you will do me a favour and a pleasure, as Mr. de Bossu, present bearer, will not fail to represent to you.
Respecting the particular charge brought by Mr. de Bredan, and the excuses he offered in your name, in case you had not sufficiently thanked me for the words I said to you at our parting, I can only say that, knowing as I do know your repugnance to a second marriage, I will no longer insist on that point, and therefore you need not be afraid that I shall ever propose one to you against your will. Indeed, since my determination and your own on this point have been made known, those parties who might again contemplate such an alliance (fn. n5) will lose all hope and desist from further proposals.
With regard to the point of your instructions to Mr. de Bredan, viz., our private conversation touching matters of Faith, and the fear you then had and still have, that the opinions expressed by you on that occasion might have left some scruple in my mind, I do not hesitate to say that, although I am sadly disappointed and grieved at our aunt's death, yet I am glad to be able to shew to you that neither on that score nor on any other is there any reason for the brotherly love and esteem I bear you to be in the least diminished. This I declare to you without reserve of any kind, and beg you to believe that it is the sincere expression of my sentiments. As to your own servants, whom you say you are ready, as Mr. de Bredan informs me, to dismiss from your service, should any of them not meet with my approbation, I can only tell you that such is my conviction of your personal affection and regard for me that I have no doubt all those who are attached to your household must necessarily partake of the same sentiments. You may, therefore, as far as I am concerned, retain them all in your service, sure as I am that should any of them be guilty of infidelity, or of any sympathy with the new doctrines, you will dismiss him and have him punished, for in these matters things and opinions tolerated in Germany cannot be put up with in these parts [of Flanders] where I am now. For this reason I should recommend, my dear sister, that should any of your chief servants be suspected of belonging to the Lutheran sect, or otherwise being contaminated with the new doctrines in point of religion, they be left behind, that is in case you should, as I sincerely hope accept the government of the said Low Countries. And that you may know at once which among your principal servants are here suspected of being infected with such pernicious ideas, I may tell you that your own "mayordomo," your chamberlain, preacher, almoner, and lady-in-waiting are among the number. To accompany you to this country, the King, our brother (Ferdinand), will furnish you with gentlemen and ladies to attend on you, and once in this country you may reconstruct your household as you think most proper, after we have talked the matter over together.—Cologne, 3rd January [1531].
Signed: " Charles."
French. Contemporary copy. (fn. n6) pp. 4.
6 Jan. 587. The Emperor's answer to the proposals of the Most Christian King.
S. E. L. 635,
f. 104.
B. M. Add. 28,582,
f. 285.
The Imperial ambassador, Mons. Guillen (fn. n7) des Barres, sieur de Veçin, is hereby instructed to answer the proposals brought by the general of Bretagne (Bayard) (fn. n8) as follows: Offers were made some time ago to Margaret [of Austria], (fn. n9) the late governess of the Low Countries, in the names of the Most Christian King of France, and of Madame the Regent (Louise) respecting a matrimonial alliance between the two royal families. Nothing would have been more acceptable to the Emperor than the alliance proposed by the King, his brother, inasmuch as it would ensure perpetual peace between the two countries; but the death of Madame having put a stop to the negotiations, and the Emperor being now on his way to Flanders, he thinks it advisable to postpone the consideration of such proposals until his arrival in that country, which he hopes will be soon. He will then send to his good brother, the King, and to the Regent (Louise) a trusty person to visit them, and communicate his intentions.
In the meantime Mr. des Barres is to assure Mr. Bayard that he may report to his master that the Emperor is desirous of strengthening in every possible way the bonds of peace that unite them both.—Colonia (Kohl), 6th January 1531.
Spanish. Original translation made for the use of the Empress in Spain. pp. 2.
10 Jan. 588. Miçer Mai to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 852,
f. 35–6.
B. M. Add. 28,582,
f. 286.
After the application made by the English in their King's name for a cardinal's hat for the auditor of the Apostolic Chamber (Ghinucci), and another for El Casal (prothonotary Casale)—which application, as he (Mai) informed the Emperor, was refused—a rumour was spread here [at Rome] that the ambassadors had asked for their " congé'." The report, however, has proved untrue as far as he (Mai) is aware of, the English still remaining at their post as usual.
Wrote also at the time that El Casal had gone to England with all the signatures and seals he had been able to procure in favour of the King from divines, canonists, and lawyers; but since then advices have come from Venice, and he himself has written this to his colleagues, that the duke of Mantua (Federigo Gonzaga) had taken them all away from him. He (Mai) does not believe in this last report; most likely if the Duke took away any papers from Casale it was only the opinions of those Mantuan doctors who had written in favour of the king of England, the Duke having ordered that the opinions which each doctor had given under his signature and seal should be recovered. (fn. n10) Has written for copies of them, as it is always useful in such cases to know the arguments of the opposite party.
(Cipher:) Miçer Felipo Decio of Siena (fn. n11) has, moreover, been persuaded by them to draw out a new opinion (consilio) on eight different points. No sooner did he (Mai) hear of it than he tried to get a copy through Don Lope de Soria, who played his cards so well that the paper is at this moment on his (Mai's) table. In six of the articles that lawyer's opinion concludes against the King; in the two remaining against the the Queen, these being: 1stly, that there was no cause for the dispensation of pope Julius II.; 2ndly, that the dispensation was not valid, because it was not stated therein that the King was under age and only 18 years old at the time.
(Common writing:) Rodrigo Niño has sent him from Venice the copy of another opinion (consilio) obtained at Padua by the English against the Queen; but as he has not yet had time to examine it, he (Mai) cannot say on what it is grounded.
The Pope brought forward in Consistory the application made by the Imperial ambassadors for a new brief of inhibition forbidding the King to marry again pending the suit, and forbidding also Parliament, the primate of England, or any other civil or ecclesiastical authority to take cognizance of the affair. Accordingly the Commissary of the cause appeared in Consistory, and made his report of the case, and the brief was obtained though with the greatest possible difficulty, owing to the opposition of some of the cardinals, notwithstanding that the Pope had promised it long ago. It has since been published in the "Audientia de las Contradittas." It is now required that His Imperial Majesty cause it to be intimated in England in the form in which it is now sent.
With regard to the separation from his mistress, the truth is that something more than that must be done judicially, because separation is not easily obtained between private individuals, much less between royal persons, especially when there is no positive proof of adultery, none having yet been produced here at Rome, but on the contrary several letters proving the contrary. (fn. n12) This article of the separation, therefore, the cardinals not only refused to grant, but insisted upon the reporter (relator) bringing it first before the Rota, there to be examined and discussed, after which the application may again be renewed in Consistory, for the cardinals to decide for or against it according to the opinion of that tribunal. The necessary legal steps are now being taken to comply with that requisite, but he (Mai) is very much afraid that this point will not be gained.
Of this brief, a copy of which is now enclosed, (fn. n13) two or three more transcripts are being made, which will go by the next courier in order not to delay this present one. It will be for His Imperial Majesty and for the Privy Council to decide whether any of them is to be sent to England (si les parescerá el aven-turar alguna). The Pope has promised to have one of them forwarded to his Nuncio in that country, instructing him that should the King attempt a new marriage, or should his Parliament or judges make any declaration in the cause, he is at once to intimate the brief, which is binding enough to them, and if he has not the means of doing so in public to do it in secret. (fn. n14) Is certain that the Nuncio will do his duty in this respect, because he is an honest man and a good servant and vassal of His Imperial Majesty. Believes it would be very much to the purpose if the Emperor would cause a letter to be written to him (the Nuncio), or that the ambassador (Chapuys) should recommend the affair to him, telling him that Your Majesty is much pleased at what he is doing in behalf of the Queen, and begs him to persevere in so meritorious a work.
(Common writing:) Mentioned in his last despatch that the English ambassadors had delivered to the Pope a letter from the King, their master, which letter was read in Consistory the same day that the brief was granted. It is so intemperate and insolent (tan desonesta y descompuesta). that he (Mai) considers it his duty to enclose a copy that the Imperial councillors may read it and see how much impudence (bellaqueria) and abuse it contains.
It is rumoured that at the interview, which, as publicly reported, the Emperor and the king of France are to hold here in Italy, the king of England is also to be present, in order to treat of these matters. Humbly begs His Imperial Majesty that if the affair can be fairly settled without injury to the queen of England to consent to it at once, not that he (Mai) entertains the least doubt about her justice and right, but to avoid the inconveniences likely to arise from such a trial, and the danger there always is of even the most just causes being lost; for it cannot be denied that in all cases tried by criminal law the issue is often more a matter of chance than of justice, and especially in one like the present, in which so much activity is being displayed and corruption employed by these devils. (fn. n15) Besides which, should there really be a General Council, it is to be feared that the cause will never be taken thither. His Majesty must not think that this is said by his ambassador in order to spare himself the trouble of working in this affair, for he has all his life (pues desde que nasció) thought of nothing else but being useful to the Emperor.
The Pope has answered the king of England's letter in a very prudent and grave manner, more befitting a Pope than a secular prince. Candidly confesses that when the Pope shewed him the brief he (Mai) was not at all displeased, for the Pope being a judge in this case, he must needs put up with the insolence of the parties concerned, as often happens. (fn. n16) Should have liked to obtain a copy of it to send to the Emperor, but His Holiness said that he himself would forward one when he heard that his brief had reached England.
Owing to some delay in the proceedings the Imperial lawyers have advised that the king of England should again be cited to appear personally or by proxy. The summons, therefore, has been made and published as well as the brief itself in the audience of "contradittas." (fn. n17) Humbly begs that it be intimated at Bruges, as well as at Dunkerke, in the same form that it goes from hence, and that it be likewise sent [to England] as soon as possible, so that the trial may be actively proceeded with. Fully expected from Spain more documentary evidence than has hitherto been sent, but he (Mai) cannot possibly wait longer, since the time for the examination of evidence (el termino de articular) has come. The articles, in which all His Majesty's good servants now here have worked to the best of their abilities, are already prepared, and there is reason to believe that everything will go right. Will do his best to send a copy of them to Spain, as well as the compulsory letters (compulsorias) that they may remit from thence as many acts and witnesses (autos y testigos) as can be procured. Another copy of the same will be sent thither, and a third to England, though he (Mai) fancies that this last will be of very little use. (fn. n18)
Before all things let an authentic copy of the proceedings formerly carried on in England come as soon as possible, because this present cause is principally one of appeal interposed by the Queen, and without the first acts (auctos) to refer to, the indictment (el indicar) cannot possibly be made. Two ways in his (Mai's) opinion are available to obtain such acts. One is for the Queen's proctor to ask judicially for them from the notaries in whose hands they may be in England, or else that the Imperial ambassador in that country (Eustace Chapuys) do apply officially in her name, because were they to deny them it would be too infamous. (fn. n19) The other is for His Imperial Majesty to persuade Campeggio, the legate, to write to his notary here [at Rome] to pass them over to the Imperial ambassadors, for he (Mai) has heard that two or three were made at the time, each of the cardinal judges (Wolsey and Campeggio) having one for his own use attested by his own notary.
(Cipher:) Hears that the marquis of Mantua really took away from Casale, whilst traversing his territory, all the sealed opinions he had gained at Mantua, and was taking to England. Has, accordingly, written to him, and begged he will send them, that it may be seen how the English are preparing themselves for the defence. (fn. n20)
(Common writing:) Don Sancho de la Cavalleria, who is now here for his own suit, as I have already informed Your Majesty, tells me that his father, who was a great lawyer, wrote once by command of the Catholic King Ferdinand in a case very similar to this one, when the Portuguese marriage was contracted. (fn. n21) At his (Mai's) request, Don Sancho has written for it, and the governor of Aragon has received instructions to remit it as soon as possible.
The Emperor's ambassador in England (Chapuys) wrote this last summer to say that in the library of St. Dominic, in Paris, a book was preserved by Petrus de Palude, in which is a passage in favour of the Queen's right, though the opposite party maintain the contrary. Has persuaded the Pope to write to his Nuncio in France to procure the book, but it appears that it cannot be found, though another by the same author, which says nothing to the purpose, has been sent. The Pope has again written to his Nuncio to procure an authentic and attested copy of the passage alluded to in the ambassador's correspondence; but all this must be done as soon as possible and in great secrecy, for fear the leaves of the volume should be torn out and taken away, for he (Mai) has heard from the ambassador that some of them are already missing. (fn. n22)
Signed: "Mai.
Addressed: " To the Sacred Majesty of the Emperor and King, our Sovereign Lord."
Spanish. Original. pp. 5.
10 Jan. 589. The Same to the High Commander.
S. E. L. 852,
f. 37–8.
B. M. Add. 28,582,
f. 290.
Advices from France say that the Most Christian King is rather in favour of the celebration of a Council, but thinks that the interview with the Emperor ought to come first. The news, such as it is, has been well received here [at Rome], for after all it causes delay, and I can assure Your Lordship that there is nothing these people desire so much as obstacles thrown in the way of the Council meeting; indeed, I should not be surprised if the whole thing had its origin here, since for a long time back the proposed interview has been one of the principal objections brought forward by Mr. de Tarbes [Gabriel de Grammont]. I have always been and am still of opinion that unless the Council be speedily convoked the French, who know how opposed these people are to it, will not fail to claim the merit of having done everything in their power to prevent it, and will then ask for a reward. (fn. n23) —Rome, 10th January 1531.
Indorsed: "Paragraph of a letter from the ambassador at Rome to the High Commander."
Spanish. Contemporary abstract. p. 1.
10 Jan. 590. Eustace Chapuys to the Emperor.
K. u. K. Haus-
Hof-u.-Staats Arch.
c. 427, No. 3.
On Sunday morning, the 8th inst., I received letters from Your Majesty's Council in the Low Countries (ez pays dembaz) commanding me to present to the King those announcing the day fixed for the funeral of Madame [Margaret], and also ordering me to ascertain as soon as possible, and inform them whether this King wished to appoint a personage to represent him at that ceremony. After dinner on the same day I went to Grynuys (Greenwich), where I still found in the King's hall (la sale du roy) the Duke [of Norfolk] sitting at table with the ambassadors of France, the earl of Vulchier (Wiltshire), and some others. Immediately on my entering the room the said Duke and Earl got up from table, and leaving behind them the ambassadors of France and other royal guests, came up to me. They were soon joined by two other members of the Privy Council, namely, the treasurer, and the King's first secretary, when the French ambassadors perceiving that they were left, as it were, to themselves, and perhaps also following the advice of the Duke, who sent them word to that effect, left the room and retired to their chamber (se retirarent en leur chambre). The Duke and the rest shewed great pleasure at my coming; asked me the reason why I had not come to Court to spend the holidays, said many flattering things, and assured me of their master's unalterable friendship towards Your Imperial Majesty. Meanwhile the King having dined in state with the Queen returned to the reception room, where I was soon introduced by the Duke himself. I was graciously received by the King, to whom I presented Madame's letters and explained the purpose of my charge; but before he read them he inquired of me who was likely to succeed Madame in the Government of the Low Countries? My answer was that I could not say for certain, but that he (the King) might well imagine that Your Majesty would make a suitable appointment, and such as his good subjects of Flanders and the Low Countries deserved, on whom Your Majesty could in case of emergency, and for any necessary and reasonable enter prize confidently rely, (fn. n24) as they had shewn in the last war of Ghelders, during which they had furnished no less than 1,800,000 florins. My answer, which was so shaped on purpose, could not have been very much to the King's taste, for he remained silent and thoughtful for some time, and then, as if he wished to put an end to a conversation which was disagreeable to him, observed: "If so the country must have been greatly impoverished." Then he began to open and read the letters, and observing that the date fixed for the funeral was so near, said that he could not possibly on so short a notice send a personage of his Court to assist at the ceremony, but that he would willingly, after consulting the matter with his Privy Council, send his instructions to Master Johan Acquet (Hacket) to represent him at the funeral, which he (the King) has since done, as I find by the letters he sent me at midnight of the same day.
After this the King said that since no news had yet been received [in England] of the election of the king of Hungary as king of the Romans, he could but repeat to me what he had said on other occasions, namely, that such election ought not to be made, and that considering the difficulties by which that measure would inevitably be surrounded, his advice was that the project should be abandoned altogether. No one knew better than he did the state of affairs in Germany, and what direction public opinion took there. He then repeated to me what he had said on a previous occasion, as I have informed Your Imperial Majesty in a former despatch, namely, that had he chosen in the lifetime of the emperor Maximilian to become king of the Romans, he would have been preferred to Your Majesty for the said Imperial dignity, as that Emperor had often offered it to him. And then he went on praising the virtues and the many good qualities of the said Emperor, adding that he was a prince who kept always in his memory the services rendered to him, and felt very grateful towards his friends. He would, I have no doubt, have proceeded to say that Your Majesty was not one of those 'princes, but recollecting the answer I made him, when he held the same language [in London], he was more sober and laconic this time, notwithstanding that I represented to him that Your Majesty was the rightful heir of the emperor Maximilian, and that being now invested with the Imperial dignity, it was your right now to grant such just and reasonable petitions. His answer was merely that with regard to the justice of the election he (the King) should very much like to be thoroughly convinced, and as to the convenience and opportuneness of it, he referred Your Majesty to those who understood political affairs. (fn. n25) Upon which, having replied to him that Your Imperial Majesty was of all the Christian princes he who listened most to the advice of his own councillors, and followed least the inspirations of his own will, the King said nothing more on the subject
Subsequently to this, and the conversation turning upon France, the King remarked to me that there was a rumour afloat that Maistre Guillem (sic) des Barres had gone to Your Majesty on certain differences that had arisen between you and the Christian King, his brother, respecting the lands and property to be consigned in Flanders, and upon my making him a suitable answer, he acknowledged that in reality there existed no cause in the consignation of that property which could in any way impair the friendly relations between the two countries, and yet that small differences of this kind, when they existed, were often a proof of the inconstancy and fickleness of mutual affection between princes.
After this, passing on to the affairs of Hungary, the King said to me, among other things, that it was out of the question to procure resistance against the Infidel in those parts, for even supposing the Turk came to Hungary, invaded that country, and was there caught as in a trap, nothing would be gained, for on the ensuing day another Turkish army would be ready to renew the war. The only enterprize of any avail against the Infidel was for the Christian princes to unite their forces and attack him in his own country, and go afterwards to the Holy Land. My answer was that there was nothing Your Majesty desired so much as the said enterprize, as he (the King) ought to know. That was, I said, one of the causes which had determined you to quit Spain, and that since your arrival in Germany you had procured and obtained from the Diet a promise of money and men for the undertaking. His reply was that the greater part of the expense of such an expedition ought naturally to fall on Your Majesty's shoulders, and that for many reasons, the first and principal of them being that you had taken the last penny from his brother Francis (as he simply calls the Most Christian King). And upon my observing to him that, nevertheless, I had not the least doubt that the king of France would have his share of the glory to be reaped by such a laudable undertaking, and that he himself would concur in this, he commended and praised the idea, but he never said either yes or no to it. With regard to the first point, however, he allowed himself to be persuaded that if a good battle was gained over the Turk the whole of his empire might be conquered, provided Your Majesty was personally at the head of the Christian army.
With regard to German affairs, about which the King interrogated me several times, asking me what news I had, &c, I told him in substance all I knew about them, except the conditions of the agreement, about which I said nothing, for fear he should take this as a footing [for further observations], (fn. n26) and I ended by informing him that everything there went well enough except the affairs of the Lutherans, which did not seem to advance much. To which last observation the King replied "en passant," and half between his teeth, "those the Council will remedy." He then assured me that for a long time he had had no news at all from Germany, and upon my observing to him that the Duke [of Norfolk] had shewn me a letter recent enough from his ambassadors in that country, he denied having seen it, saying and repeating six times over that he had heard from Rome, but not from Germany, which assertion proved to me that what the King wanted was to induce me to ask him for news from Germany, in order to have an occasion of again returning to the subject of the divorce. Perceiving, however, that the more that wretched affair was discussed the more obstinately attached he seemed to his own opinion, I determined not to give him this time an opportunity of touching on the subject, and avoid all allusion to the Council, should he come to mention it; for evidently whenever it is mentioned in his presence he becomes more suspicious and doubtful about it than willing to admit any representations that might with civility be addressed to him. Thus, though he tried hard to drag me into discussion I did not take the bait.
After some more remarks as graciously made as the former, the hour being much advanced, the King granted me permission to see the Queen, which I did, when she expressed her satisfaction that I had not, as above said, spoken to the King about her affairs. I informed her particularly of the order in which it was necessary to proceed was to counteract the doings of Parliament, at which she was very glad, and promised to write to the queen of France in accordance with what I advised in my last; I left her in better state of mind and more determined than ever to resist, and also to take any steps that may be recommended to her as likely to help on the favourable termination of her suit.
Never were the ambassadors of France for a long time past in such close correspondence with these people as they are at present, for since the second day of (Noel) scarcely one or two have passed without their being present at Court, and always, as they say, transacting business of some kind, so much so, that whenever some member of the King's Privy Council is requested to attend to business of mine, and of other ambassadors, he invariably answers that his time is taken up by the French ambassadors, and that until they are dispatched he cannot possibly promise his attention. I did, in my despatch of last December inform Your Majesty of my suspicions respecting these frequent conferences. I have since ascertained, as much from the Queen's servants as from other quarters, that the King is about to confer on Jehan Jocquin one of the bishoprics formerly held by the Cardinal (Wolsey), and that not only is he expected to entangle (barboiller) the affairs of the Court of France, but will also go as far as Rome to try his skill there. Indeed, some one told me the other day that Jocquin had proposed to resume the old negotiations for a marriage between the Pope's niece and one of the sons of the king of France. I should not be surprised if another marriage between the duke Alessandro [de' Medici] and the princess of England were also proposed, in order to re-assure the Pope, but I must own that until now I have seen no symptoms or indications of it here. (fn. n27) I am, however, more inclined to think and fear very much that Jocquin has taken charge of doing both in France and at Rome something to thwart and impede the celebration of the Council, for though formerly he seemed to be rather inclined to it, yet three or four days ago he said to the Milanese ambassador that the Council in contemplation could only be a source of evils and inconveniences of all kinds, such as had resulted from other councils of the Church, and that no good could be expected therefrom.
This very morning, whilst writing this despatch, I have received the letter which Your Majesty caused to be written to me on the 3rd inst. In answer to which I can at once state that all the appeals and protests on the affairs of the Queen, to which that letter alludes, have been already made and were entered in due form some time ago; not only has proper provision been made to that effect, but likewise other legal steps much wanted for the Queen's defence have been taken, so much so, that nothing more, I hope, is required for the better direction of the affair, as I shall soon have the honour to inform Your Majesty more fully in a future despatch.
I quite share the opinion contained in the said letter, namely, that Your Majesty cannot think this king so blind as to proceed " de facto," for certainly new symptoms and indications appear daily—stronger even than those of last year—shewing that the King is most likely to be stopped in his rash enter prize. The parties themselves see greater danger than before; even the members of the Privy Council, and those whom the affair touches more particularly begin to shew fear, so that by reasons and conjectures innumerable I am inclined to believe firmly now more than ever that the King will not dare to proceed " de facto." I own that the Queen herself is not of my opinion, and that she has at times wondered at my incredulity, as likewise several English gentlemen who have come to see and warn me. Yet, considering, on the other hand, the great fear which the Queen and the nation at large have, the importance of the affair, and the duties of my especial charge, which cannot be regulated by my own private fancies, the great credit of the Lady Anne, and the passionate love of the King for her, I have been induced to write in the way I have done hitherto, since, after all, excessive caution and fear seem to me far preferable to blind confidence.
I believe that the discussion (dispute) in Parliament may still be prevented, but at any rate, if it cannot, measures shall be taken that no injury be done to the Queen through it. It appears that these people do not wish the Queen to defend herself [in Parliament], for yesterday, the duke of Norphorc (Norfolk) wrote a letter to her proctor—who has always and upon all occasions briskly and boldly taken up her defence— bidding him on the receipt of his letter to go to a castle very far from this city, and there await the King's pleasure. The good proctor, who is a doctor in Law, and a very worthy and excellent man, is very much astonished at receiving such an order. He cannot imagine what the cause of his exile can be, unless it be to keep him out of the way during these next sessions of Parliament which are to begin at the time I have informed Your Majesty.—London, 10th January [1531].
Signed; " Eustace Chapuys.''
Addressed: "To the Emperor."
Indorsed: "From the ambassador Chapuys. Received the 20th."
French. Holograph. pp. 7.


  • n1. "Puys quil a vehu que pregnoys le frain aux dens, et que ne luy veux riens laysser couler." This, and the other passages in italics, is in cipher.
  • n2. "Que ma affirme avoer ouy [de deux ou trois des principaulx [...] sans doubte ce mariaige se acheueroit en ce parlement], et dient [ils] quil [s] espoyrent que apres le [fait de aisement rapaiser votre maiesté."]
  • n3. ["Le Dame sen tenent asseuree est plus brave qung lion] jusques a dire a vne dame [de la royne] quelle voudroit que tant [dispagniolz quil y a au monde fussent en la mer]; et luy disant lautre que pour lhonneur [de la royne] quelle ne deuroit ainsi parler], elle luy repplica quelle ne se [challoit de la royne ne de siens] et quelle aymeroit mieux que la dite royne fust pendue quelle confessat quelle fut sa maistresse."
  • n4. In 1531 the bishop of Badajoz (Pacensis) was Don Pedro Gonzalez Manso, of whom Gil Gonzalez Davila, in his Theatro Eclesiastico de las Iglesias de España, vol. iv., p. 34, says that such was his reputation for virtue and learning that the Emperor appointed him to be president of the Chancery Court of Valladolid. He was bishop first of Guadix, in the kingdom of Granada, then of Tuy, in Galicia, afterwards of Badajoz (Pax Julia), and lastly of Osma, to which see he was promoted at the end of 1532, in the room of Garcia de Loaysa, who was transferred to Siguenza. See Loperraez Corvalan, Descripcion historica del Obispado de Osma, vol. i., pp. 407–11.
  • n5. Among them the Palatine of the Rhine, Frederic, about whose marriage to the widowed Queen there had been some talk. Subsequently he asked the Emperor for the hand of the marchioness of Monferrato, but unsuccessfully. See Lanz, Correspondenz, &c., vol. i., p. 419.
  • n6. The original of this letter, which is entirely written in the Emperor's hand, is preserved in the archives of Brussels. See Lanz, Correspondenz der Kayser Karl V., vol. i., pp. 416–18. A copy affording slight variations is also at Simancas.
  • n7. Guillen is for Guillaume or William, properly speaking Wilhelm.
  • n8. Gilbert Bayard or Bayart, generally called L'Esleu, or the Elect. He was chamberlain and secretary to king Francis. See vol. iv., part 2, pp. 48, 50, 374, &c.
  • n9. Margaret of Austria, daughter of the emperor Maximilian, and consequently aunt of Charles; she died on the 1st of December 1530.
  • n10. "Porque no seran sino los doctores de Mantua que havian aconsejado en su favor, que el Duque mandó que cobrassen sus sellos.
  • n11. Philip Decius or Filippo Decio, a lawyer of Siena, who died in 1535. See part 1, pp. 683 and 717.
  • n12. "Quanto a lo de la separacion a la verdad ay algo mas que hacer de justicia . . . . mayormente que acá no consta del adulterio, antes ay muchas cartas en contrario."
  • n13. Not in the packet, though copied at full in the Berzosa collection of transcripts from the Vatican. See Introduction to part 1, pp. xx–xxiv.
  • n14. "Que sy el rey quisiere casarse, ó alguno de aquellos jueces o [el] parlamento declarasen en la causa, que les intime el breve que es harto [fuerte] sino tiene otro horden en secreto."
  • n15. "Mayormente con las diligentias y dadivas con que estos diablos negocian, y en caso que sa aya de tener consilio (sic) seria mas de temer que esta causa no llegase a ello."
  • n16. "Pero quando me lo mostró no me desplacio (sic), porque siendo juez ha de çufrir la insolentia de las partes como se hace muchas vezes."
  • n17. This word is equivalent to " contumacy."
  • n18. "Otros [articulos] embiaré ay, y otros en Inglaterra, ahun[que] pienso que estos [ultimos] aprovecharan poco."
  • n19. "Porque á negar esto seria un infierno."
  • n20. " Yo le he scripto y suplicado que me los embie por descubrir tambien en estos de lo que se arman en el secreto de la causa,"
  • n21. In 1490 Isabella, eldest daughter of Ferdinand of Aragon and Isabella of Castille, married Alfonso, son of the king of Portugal (Dom João II.) Eight months after Isabella became a widow, and married King Dom Manuel, first cousin of Alfonso. On the death of the queen of Portugal, in August 1498, Dom Alfonso married Isabella's sister, by name Maria, who became the mother of another Isabella, the Empress, married to Charles V. in 1526.
  • n22. The passages from this book, which was never printed, were refuted by bishop Fisher.
  • n23. " Yo no dejo de repetir lo dicho, que me paresce que a no hazerse concilio, diran que tratamos de mas que del concilio, que he miedo que franceses no lo vendan á este Señor por suyo qualquier estorbo que venga, lo que Dios no quiera."
  • n24. " Des quieux en cas d'imprinse necessayre et ragionable (sic) vostre maieste en finiroet jusques au bout."
  • n25. " A quoy ne me dit aultre fors que [il sen vouldroit bien appercevoir et que de la raisonableté dont luy parloye que vostre maieste sen debuoit remettre a ceux qu'entendoint les afferes.]"
  • n26. " Je luy en dis la substance excepte des conditions pour ce que yl ny prent (prins) pied."
  • n27. " Quelcung ma dit quil avoit mis en avant de reprendre les vielles brisees du [marchief] dont jadis fust porparle [dung des filz du roy de France et la nyece du pape]. Je me doubteroye bien ausy quil ne feist quelque ouverture [de marchief entre le duc Alexandre et la princesse dangleterre pour amuser le pape] de quoy toutesfoys nen ay peu encoures apperçvuoer fumiere quelconque."