Spain: June 1533, 26-30

Pages 715-727

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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June 1533, 26-30

28 June. 1090. Andrea Doria, prince of Melfi, to the Emperor.
S. E. L. 860, f. 19.
B. M. Add. 28,585,
f. 294.
All are waiting for the arrival of Aponte with the Emperor's orders. The garrison of Coron must needs be relieved; time presses and the place cannot hold out longer.
Has written to His Holiness as if coming from himself, that he must persuade the French to lend their galleys for that service, not indeed as subject to, but in company with, the Imperial fleet. Both together might inflict serious loss on the Infidel in those parts. The Pope's answer, however, has been so preposterous (tan fuera de proposito), that in his opinion very little hope can be entertained of his ever joining in an enterprize of this sort, much less the French. Such being the case, if Coron is to be saved, it behoves His Majesty to adopt measures for the immediate relief of that fortress; though our forces may be inferior to those of the enemy, it is to be hoped that God will make his cause triumph over the Infidel.
The 19 galleys that remained in Spain, and the four of Antonio Doria, fitted out as they were to bring the Infanta [Margarita] to these parts, ought at once to sail for Messina. With these 23 galleys, 38 belonging to the Emperor, and four more of the Order of St. John, and if no more can be procured, a number of other vessels (navios) well manned with Spanish infantry, I propose going in search of the Turkish fleet, and though much inferior in number obliging them to raise the siege.
The measure, however, admits of no delay. 25,000 ducats must be remitted to the ambassador here for the first expenses, and if a paymaster be required, he (Doria) recommends the person of Francisco Duarte.
Hears from prisoners taken by captain Antonio Doria, and captain Diesse (sic) that one of the Turkish galleys had taken to Barbarossa his appointment of captain general of the sea, and the order to sail to the Levant. It will be better known there if the news deserves credit or not.—Genoa, 28th June 1533 (fn. n1)
Spanish. Original. pp. 3.
28 June. 1091. Eustace Chapuys to the Emperor.
K. u. K. Haus-
c. 228, No. 40.
Having received Your Majesty's letter of the 31st of May, together with those addressed to the Queen, as well as the duplicate of the instructions forwarded to Rome, and the copies therein mentioned; having deciphered the letters written in cipher, and translated into Spanish the papers in Latin or French sent at the same time, I immediately forwarded the whole for the Queen's perusal, as it seemed to me a better plan than calling upon her myself, and losing many days in applying for permission to see her, which would have been inevitable. I might also through such an application have raised the suspicion of the King and Privy Councillors, and lost perhaps the little credit I seem to enjoy just now with them. I was, moreover, afraid that if I applied for and obtained a permission to see the Queen the King might again request me to speak to her, and use all my influence that she may submit to the sentence of the archbishop of Canterbury, a thing which I had already refused to do.
I, therefore, sent the letters and papers for the perusal of the Queen, who has since written to express the incalculable consolation and relief she has experienced at reading the instructions sent to Your Majesty's ambassadors at Rome, as likewise the letter addressed to herself; and I fancy that she will soon write to Your Majesty to thank you for your exertions in her behalf. She has also written to me, praising much the resolution of not sending a person to her under present circumstances, the reasons and considerations contained in Your Majesty's letter to me, (fn. n2) which she fully accepts, besides agreeing with me that the time and season for doing that will be when the sentence on the principal cause is fairly given, as I have had the honour of informing Your Majesty.
Should the case come to that Your Majesty will perhaps be pleased to consider that the more numerous the embassy, and the higher the rank and authority of its individual members, the more chance there will be of its producing the desired effect upon this king's mind, should God inspire him the least, and upon the minds of the people of this country, thus increasing their hopes, and fostering the incredible good-will and affection they bear to the Queen and to Your Imperial Majesty. It would be desirable, indeed, that in case of those, who may come here on such an errand, perceiving that all their remonstrances are of no use, they should be provided with a mandate and commission to bring the case before the Parliament that might be assembled at the time. Should the Queen consent to this last step, which I doubt, the King will place himself the more in fault with his own people, who, owing to his refusal, would naturally become more and more anxious of knowing what the motion was about, and what its import could be, when the motion might very easily for such a cause and occasion be published and circulated. (fn. n3)
Respecting other points contained in the said instructions the Queen writes to me, that for upwards of one year all those who used to advise her in these matters had scarcely dared give their opinion (as I know well), and, therefore, that I had been, and was her only refuge for the direction of her affairs, for which reason she begged and entreated me to advise and counsel her, and write both to Your Majesty and to your ambassadors at Rome.
The contents of the instructions have been so wisely and admirably conceived and drawn out (pourpensé) that in my opinion there is nothing to add to or retrench in them; for certainly the path to justice which Your Majesty proposes to follow is the true, right, and impartial sentence of all this affair, the sole one which I myself did always follow and recommend before having recourse to other more rigorous measures. I was certain, after what Your Majesty wrote to me before leaving Bologna the last time, that as soon as the Pope returned to Rome, if this king did not send his powers, he would proceed to the declaration and definitive sentence; but since that has not yet taken place, I see no other means of attaining our object than the one proposed: namely, for the princes to whom Your Majesty has written on this subject to interfere here with their solicitations and support. Which interference, besides helping to excuse Your Majesty with regard to this kingwho complains that you alone among all the Queen's relatives oppose him in this matter—might also aid considerably towards persuading His Holiness to hasten with the sentence, moving this king to repentance, and increasing the number of those who hold for the Queen, and who indeed constitute the whole of this kingdom, for it may be confidently asserted that with the exception perhaps of one dozen men all the rest of the kingdom take her part.
I believe, therefore, that for the above-named considerations there would be no great harm if Monsieur de Savoie, who is closely allied to the Queen by marriage, should also interfere (fn. n4)
As, moreover, this king has invaribly armed and strengthened himself with the consent, the will, and disposition of his Parliament, it would seem advisable for the above considerations that all the titled nobility of Aragon and Castille, or at least the grandees of Spain, should address a letter to His Holiness representing the case just as this king has by sheer force compelled his own Parliament to do. And it would be still better if the said nobility were pressingly to ask Your Majesty to remedy by all the means in your power the Queen's lamentable case, at the same time offering their persons and property in consideration of the Queen's many virtues, and of the immortal memory of the Catholic sovereigns [Ferdinand and Isabella of Spain]. This no Spaniard would for a moment hesitate to do if they were privately assured first that they would not be taken at their word, whilst the offer only being made public would wonder- fully tell among other remedies towards the cure of such an evil. (fn. n5)
With regard to king Francis' favour and help in this affair I fancy that no great reliance can be placed on his words, for not withstanding the promises he has made at various times he has always shewn partiality for this king, and tried to keep on good terms with the Lady, to whom within the last week he has sent by esquire St. Julien a handsome and richly decorated Sedan chair (une belle et riche littiere) and three mules with harness and accoutrements in very good order.
He (the king of France) will probably give as an excuse not to act that sentence has not yet been pronounced, but he might very easily allow the Queen, his wife, to write secretly in favour of her Royal relative. (fn. n6)
The instructions for Your Majesty's ambassadors at Rome being, as I said above, so beautifully drawn up, I might be excused adding any suggestions of my own, and thus making parade of my ignorance; yet in order the better to obey Your Majesty's commands, which is the thing in this world I most desire, I have written to the count of Cyfuentes (Don Fernando de Sylva), Your Majesty's ambassador at Rome, a letter of which the enclosed is a copy recommending the whole affair and adding a few observations. I will, therefore, forbear from saying anything more about it save to remind Your Majesty that it would be advisable that the sentence should be pronounced some time before the Lady Anne is delivered of a child, for if this happened to be a son the King would, as I have written to the Count, immediately have him sworn heir to his crown by this Parliament, which is to meet again in October, and if so, the incoveniences arising from the divorce would be much greater even than at present.
The rest of the news I have to report is that the truce with the Scots seems at last to have been made by sea as well as by land, and that its duration is to be one year, to count from this day.
The King's Privy Council have lately been trying to suppress and do away with the assemblies of armed men which always take place here on the eve of St. John and St. Peter. This is done, as I hear, to guard against any popular riot or mutiny (mutinacion), of which the King and his Council are mightily afraid just now. On the other hand the Council is about to make some arrangement for increasing the Queen's allowance beyond the sum she is entitled to as the widow of prince Arthur, that she may of herself, and without the daily allowance which the King has hitherto made her, keep up suitable state. (fn. n7) Nothing, however, has as yet been decided on this point, but I shall not fail to apprize Your Majesty of the result, and will try my utmost that no diminution of the Queen's usual income take place.
It would be advisable, if possible, that should Your Majesty send an embassy to this country with the Papal sentence, there should be ambassadors from all the princes above named, and likewise from your two sisters, the Most Christian queen [of France] and the queen [dowager] of Hungary.
After writing the above the members of the King's Privy Council sent a polite message requesting me to take the trouble of going to them, to which I willingly acceded. Having accordingly gone thither they announced to me in the King's name and by his commands that having always found in me a very strong, praiseworthy, and complete inclination towards the maintenance of peace and friendship between the Empire and England, and also towards the transaction of business amicably; considering me, as the King and they were glad to acknowledge, a prudent, discreet, and experienced councillor, they had orders to notify to me that their master having, after due declaration from the Church, taken a legitimate wife, and caused her to be crowned as queen, as I must know, and it being impossible that there should be two queens of the same kingdom, the King had resolved for certain considerations, and in order to avoid inconveniences of all sorts, that queen Katharine should henceforwards relinquish that title. (fn. n8) For that very reason the King would no longer in future make for the Queen's maintenance such provision as he had made up to this day; though having regard to her many good qualities and virtues, and to the rank and position of her kinsmen and relations, he would treat her with kindly consideration (humainement) and guide himself entirely by my counsel and advice in the matter, this being (they said) the principal reason for which I had been summoned.
Many other gracious words of the same kind did the members of the King's Privy Council address to me on this occasion, which I answered by first thanking the King for the good opinion which they said he had of me, and then telling the councillors that they must and ought to know that the King's act and the archbishop of Canterbury's sentence were things which could in nowise affect the Queen's real position, the determination and declaration of which depended entirely on the sentence of His Holiness, the Pope, the sole competent judge in an affair of this kind. And that although I had no mandate to speak on the subject, yet in order to shew my constant attachment to the King's service, I would, since I was so invited, make a slight remark or two. It seemed to me (I said) with regard to the title and appellation of Queen, which they wished to take away, that since the King himself confessed that queen Katharine had been once his legitimate wife and queen (the Princess being born of that true and perfectly legal marriage); since the Queen herself had done nothing to forfeit that name, and was herself issued from Royal blood; since her using such a title could in nowise prejudice the King, for women in general were fond and proud of such names, she ought to retain it as a consolation and comfort in her misfortunes, were it for no other reason than to preserve the rank she once had, as was the case with the duchess of Suffort (Suffolk), here commonly called queen of France, and especially as king Francis, who was in such credit and on such good terms with them, did not take offence at the king of England entitling himself king of France. Besides which, as I had stated some time before to the duke of Norfolk and to Cromwell, since the King had coloured his divorce under the scruple of conscience—without which, as he asserted, he would not for anything in this world have taken another wife—what other scruple could the King now find to justify him in taking away her title, and otherwise not improving upon his ordinary treatment of her? It could not be a matter of great importance and cost for a king, so opulent as he was, to insure to the Queen a proper allowance when he knew that the money he furnished her with was not sent out of the country, to Your Majesty or to other princes. The Queen did not build towers, castles, or fortresses with it, or raise armies against him; the whole was spent paying the gentlemen of her household and in providing marriage portions for her gentlewomen, a custom which the King himself was bound to observe. (fn. n9)
It seemed to me quite unnecessary to ask my counsel and advice as to the way in which the Queen was to be treated, for so generous, prudent, liberal, and magnanimous a king, as he was, knew far better than I could the requirements of a lady of the same Royal degree as himself. Indeed, one might answer such a question as the King had asked in the words of king Porus of India to Alexander the Great, when he became his prisoner: "Basilice siue regaliter," which was as much as he could ask from a prince. (fn. n10) As to my mixing myself up any further with the settlement of the said allowance, or attempting to persuade the Queen to do that which might possibly turn out to the prejudice of her just rights, I would guard against such a step, for my mandate was principally to work for the maintenance of peace, and the preservation of friendship between Your Majesty and this king in the first place, and after that (secondemant) do my best for the upholding of the Queen's just and due rights. I took the King, moreover, to be so virtuous a prince that he would not willingly require me to do that which was contrary to my instructions. I could not do less than praise and thank him for his kindness and benevolence in thus communicating to me his plans and ideas on the subject, which I should not fail to report to Your Majesty.
My peroration at an end the Privy Councillors retired into an adjoining room, and after some discussion came into the hall again and began at once to praise the zeal I had shewn for the preservation of the mutual peace and the King's service; but they said they could not well without first consulting the King, their master, reply to the arguments I had made use of in my speech; they would report and then ascertain His Highness' pleasure. Upon which, after many compliments, and having filled their ears with protests of my desire and good intentions respecting the Queen's treatment, for which I did my best to persuade them of the necessity at least outwardly and in appearance, I left them and returned home.
On my way back I met both the French ambassador and Esquire St. Jullien coming back from Greenwich, whither they had gone to present the Sedan chair to the Lady Anne, of which she immediately made use to go to a place 3 miles off. I talked a good while with them, but was unable to hear any news of importance.
The Princess has been unwell of late, but thank God she has now recovered, and went yesterday from a house of the archbishop of Canterbury, where she had been staying nearly a year, to another belonging to the King about 40 miles from this city. During her late illness she applied to the King, her father, for permission to have the Queen's physician and apothecary in attendance upon her, which permission the King gladly granted, and the Queen herself has been allowed to send her messages whenever she liked, and might, I dare say, have visited her if she had chosen. (fn. n11)
I have just been told that the duchess of Suffolk, the late queen dowager of France, is dead, (fn. n12) in consequence of which the king of France will gain the 30,000 crs. a year, which he paid for her dower.
Having already received so many proofs of Your Majesty's liberality without any particular merits of my own, but merely through your generosity and munificence, I feel ashamed to beg for further reward, and yet. Your Majesty's clemency and magnanimity, as well as my wish to have more power and ability to serve you—which is the constant aim of my wishes—emboldens and almost compels me to beg Your Majesty as humbly as I possibly can to bear me in mind in the next distribution of ecclesiastical benefices, and I hope to fulfil my several duties in such a manner for the above considerations as well as for the service of God, that Your Majesty may not consider your favours badly employed.—London, 28th June 1533.
Signed: "Eusthace (sic) Chapuys."
French. Original partly in cipher. pp. 8.
30 June. 1092. Rodrigo Davalos to the high commander of Leon.
S. E. L. 860, f. 22.
B. M. Add. 28,585,
f. 296.
I have written to the Emperor and to yourself about the state of the matrimonial cause. Since then, on Friday last, the reading of the report in Consistory was finished, and I obtained from His Holiness an order for the auditors of the Rota to meet on Monday next without fail, and take cognizance of the report, that they may afterwards give their opinion and vote. Such is the arrangement, and if the auditors think that the evidence adduced is sufficient for a determination there is a chance of sentence being pronounced before the holidays; but as far as I can gather from people's conversations I very much fear that our proofs will not be deemed sufficiently strong. If so, it must be Miçer Mai's fault, who had care of this negotiation, that the remissory letters were not presented. Yet, nevertheless, hopes are still entertained that the evidence adduced will be ample. The remissory letters will not be presented because time is short, and we want to see whether the evidence brought forward will be sufficient to get what we want. If not, it will be necessary to present the other remissories when the time comes, that is to say, in ten weeks, or perhaps more, if His Holiness, as announced, goes to have his interview with the king of France.
Your Lordship may believe me when I say that this suit has been carried on as if it were that of the poorest woman in the world; since the count of Cifuentes came and I have been here the proceedings have been pushed on, but the advocates and proctors have not received one real. I venture to mention these facts that Your Lordship may be aware of the state of things here, and decide what is to be done. At this present juncture it would be advisable to fill the hands of these people freely (untarles las manos á estos), that they may take up this affair exclusively and leave others by which they can earn a livelihood. I am convinced that however strenuous our efforts the Pope will not make a declaration either this next week, or the one after. As I have already said all business is at an end, although the Count and I are determined to pray His Holiness to take the unusual step of proroguing the holidays, the case being so important, affecting in such a manner the whole of Christendom, and being the first of this nature ever brought before the Rota. Cannot say what effect our entreaties will have. Should the Pope accede to our request there is still a hope left, because, as I say, the remissories will be presented, examined and perhaps found sufficient. Otherwise it is to be feared that this affair will end as Dr. Ortiz prognosticates; the theologians will lose courage, (fn. n13) and if we once enter upon such road as this four months will not be sufficient to bring matters round, although it must be said that the Doctor has been sufficiently warned, and he tells me that even if that step is taken the whole will be successfully carried out with God's help. These are matters which I shall not attempt to describe in writing. (fn. n14)
I therefore beg Your Lordship to send me your instructions. As to the cardinal of Jaen (Estevan Gabriel Merino) I should like to be able to say what I think of him and of his plans, but it is out of the scope of my official duties. All I can say for the present is that his scheme seems to me good enough under present circumstances, especially until a remedy comes from thence.
Nothing would be more advantageous for the Emperor's service than unanimity among these ministers, as Your Lordship knows, and yet I can assure you that of nothing that is done in this business is the Cardinal informed unless it be what I myself tell him. (fn. n15) I have endeavoured to make these gentlemen pull together because I considered it so much for the Emperor's service, but all in vain. I find the Count so hard and so determined not to give the Cardinal a voice in this affair, but to keep him in perfect ignorance of what is being done, and so jealous of the Emperor's writing to him and listening to his advice, that I fear things cannot go on in this way. The Cardinal, on the other hand, protests that he cannot guess what has given the Count such a bad opinion of him and of the zeal he displays in this negotiation. Your Lordship knows well how careful the Cardinal is in all the transactions entrusted to him, how active and earnest. This is what I think has made the Count jealous of him. The Cardinal tells me that it was never his intention, nay, it never crossed his mind, to employ the means that were used in former times, but only to conduct and direct matters for the Emperor's best service, and then leave the affair in the hands of the Count for him to carry out and complete. And it must be granted, that if such be the Cardinal's views—and there is no reason for me to doubt his word—his opinion in these matters is of some authority, and that were his advice followed things would go on better than they do. I cannot be more explicit, and I give you my word of honour as a gentleman that neither the Cardinal nor the Count knows what I am now writing to Your Lordship, and, therefore, I beg you not to make me the author of this report, unless it be to His Imperial Majesty. My only object in thus speaking from the bottom of my heart is that Your Lordship may be apprized of the real state of affairs here and adopt such measures as may be most conducive to the Imperial service.—Rome, 30th June 1533.
Signed: "Rodrigo Davalos."
Spanish. Holograph. pp. 5.


  • n1. There is on the margin a note from one of the Imperial secretaries, thus worded: "To tell him (Doria) of the provision that has been made, and that his letter was received after the departure of Aponte. To recommend him to act according to instructions."
  • n2. "Et ma escript auoir este tres bien aduise de n'avoir içi envoyé personno pour ceste heure par les consideracions quil a pleu a vostre maieste me faire escripre, et que le temps et sayson pour ce fere sera de lors que la [ sentence sera donnée] ainsy quai çi devant escript a vostre maiesté."
  • n3. "Et seroit bon que ceulx que viendront, voyant que les particulieres remonstrances faictes au roy seroint inutiles, eussent charge et commission de proposer le cas a oblie (sic) voire devant les estatz du pays que par auanture pour lors seroint assemblez. Et quant la royne vouldroit consentir a ce derrier poinct de se proposer deuant les dictz etatz quil est bien a doubter, tant plus se mectra il en la pressumpcion de son peuple, le quel pour le reffus du roy seroit tant plus curieux de vouloir entendre la proposicion que lon leur vouldroit fere, la quelle a ceste cause et occasion] se pourroit tres aysemant semer et publier."
  • n4. By Monsieur de Savoie Carlo, duke of Savoy, is meant, who was married to Beatrix, the daughter of king Emanuel of Portugal, and consequently Catharine's uiece.
  • n5. Et que pour ce cas ils offrissent personne et biens, ce que ne croy ne reffuseront, leur donant apart lexempcion de telle offre et promesse, le quel offre yçi publié joinct les autres remedes serviroit inextimbalement."
  • n6. "I1 peult en tout pretendre quelque excuse jusques la [sentence soit donnee] ce que pour maintenant il pourroit fere seroit de permectre secretement que la [royne madame sa famme en escriqvisse]."
  • n7. "Le tout semployoit a entretenir gentilhommes et marrier gentilles femmes ce que le roy mesme seroit tenu de faire."
  • n8. "Quayant par la declaracion de leglise prinse (sic) une legitime femme et layant faite, comme je pouvoes sçavoer, couronner royne de ce royaulme, au quel ne povoint convenablement estre deux roynes, il desliberoit que le royne desormays soy despourtast de tel tictre."
  • n9. "Le dit conseyl est apres pour regarder de augmenter les assignaulx du douayre que la royne eust du prince Artuz affin que delle meme sans la cotidienne provision que le roy jusques içy luy a subministré dresse et tienne son estatz."
  • n10. Pasilice says the text: "Quenportoit tout ce quil en sçauroit demander a ung prince."
  • n11. "Estant ainsy indispose elle demanda licence au roy davoer le medecin et apothicayre de la royne, dont le roy fust tres contenct, et y a mande la royne a son playsir quantesfoys yl luy a pleu, et cuyde quil ne luy seroyt nye de lenboyer visiter."
  • n12. "Lon me vient dire pour vray que le duchesse de Suffocq, jadis royne de France, estoit trespaseee."
  • n13. "Temese que ha de venir este negocio á lo que toca el Dr. Ortiz, que es desanimar [se] lo que los teologos en este caso contradizen."
  • n14. "Y tiene por averiguado que quando vengan en esto, que se llevará todo con ayuda do Dios: son puntos que yo no sabria escribir."
  • n15. "Y, tambien só certificar á V. S. que de nada no se le da parte sy[no] la que yo le doy."