Spain: June 1534, 1-15

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 5 Part 1, 1534-1535. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1886.

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'Spain: June 1534, 1-15', Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 5 Part 1, 1534-1535, (London, 1886), pp. 173-192. British History Online [accessed 13 June 2024].

. "Spain: June 1534, 1-15", in Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 5 Part 1, 1534-1535, (London, 1886) 173-192. British History Online, accessed June 13, 2024,

. "Spain: June 1534, 1-15", Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 5 Part 1, 1534-1535, (London, 1886). 173-192. British History Online. Web. 13 June 2024,

June 1534, 1-15

7 June. 61. Eustace Chapuys to the Same.
Rep. P. C., Fasc.229,
No. 41.
Mr. de la Guiche has brought his master's resolution concerning the interview of the two Kings, which, as it appears, is to take place in the month of August, in the same towns as the last, (fn. n1) without, however, any attendance of ladies, or a very numerous suite. The said De la Guyche left this very morning for France, in company with the Vayvod's agent, who goes thither for the purpose of having his master's affairs settled.
According to a message received yesterday from the Queen, Your Majesty's aunt, it would appear that this King has, since my last application to the Privy Councillors, shown a little more commiseration for her. He has ordered the release of her confessor, physician, apothecary, and other officers and servants of her household; which measure, added to the letters which Your Majesty has been pleased to address her, has been of great consolation to her. She has already sent me three or four messages, urging me to ask the King's permission to visit her, as she says she wishes to talk to me. I have, accordingly, applied for such permission over and over again, and yesterday Cromwell sent me word that as soon as two doctors whom the King had lately sent to the Queen returned to Court, I would receive such an answer as would completely satisfy and content me. (fn. n2) Of the result of which, as well as of any other event worthy of notice, I shall not fail to advise Your Majesty.—London, 7 June 1534."
Signed: "Eustace Chapuys"
Addressed: "To the Emperor"
Indorsed: "From the ambassador in England. Received on the 14th of July."
French. Original. 1 p.
30 May. 62. Cardinal Farnese to the Same.
S. E. Roma, L. 861,
f. 82.
B. M. Add. 28,586,
f. 261.
Returns thanks for the Emperor's holograph letter acknowledging his services in the determination of the matrimonial cause.—Rome, 30 May 1534.
Signed: "Humilis Servitor, El Cardinal Farnese."
Addressed: "Sacræ Cæsareæ Maiestati."
Italian. Holograph. 1 p.
6 June. 63. Count Cifuentes to the Same. (fn. n3)
S. E. L. 862,
ff. 32–3.
B. M. Add. 28,586,
f. 262.
My last despatch was dated the 11th of May. Since then Your Majesty's letter of the 1st has come to hand, which I hasten to answer as follows:
I gave Your Majesty's holograph letter to His Holiness, and thanked him in your name for the sentence in favour of Her Highness, the queen of England. Gave him also the letters in my credence, which he (the Pope) perused, and then told me, "Now that justice is done, it is to be hoped, and I wish it very much, that the king of England will obey the sentence." I answered him as instructed, that if he did not, Your Imperial Majesty would do your duty as a Christian Prince, Emperor, and King Catholic, and would not fail in helping him to the execution of the sentence. The Pope replied that so he hoped.
All this paragraph to be answered as resolved in Council. After this, on the receipt of a letter from your Majesty's ambassador in England, I had occasion to call again on His Holiness, and deliver to him your message respecting an embassy to be sent to the King of that country. I asked what he thought about a personage from Your Majesty, accompanied by the Imperial ambassador in England (Eustace Chapuys), and another from him (the Pope), going thither together for the purpose of inducing that King to turn from the erroneous path in which he was walking, and obey the Papal sentence. I failed not to represent to him the many just reasons and causes for such a course, so prudently and wisely alluded to in the instructions. Should no other advantage (said I) result from that step, it would at any rate serve for greater justification before God and the World, and would make the justice of the Queen's cause more conspicuous to English subjects. (fn. n4) I assured him that Your Majesty would not listen to any arrangement or concert on that particular affair without his previous consent. Thereupon His Holiness answered in his usual placid manner,—that which he generally employs when the subject of conversation is disagreeable to him, or does not entirely suit his views,—"I do not believe that the measures you speak of will be of any use towards inducing the king of England to obey the sentence. Yet, though useless, I see no harm in adopting them; it will be a sort of complimentary form, which, if it does no good, can do no harm. The personage sent by the Emperor ought to carry instructions in his pocket, so that, should the King disregard the kind admonition intended, a protest should at once be legally entered, couched in such words as the Emperor may deem fit." My answer was that in such a complimentary formality, Your Majesty's extraordinary ambassador ought, in my opinion, to be accompanied by another ambassador from himself, in order that in the event of the King not acquiescing therein, the steps mentioned in Your Majesty's letter should be taken at once. Here the Pope observed that his duty was merely to do justice by Papal authority and in virtue of his office, neither more nor less. I replied, that it was a sort of thing in which he (the Pope) would lose none of his own authority: on the contrary, by acting thus, he would please God and the World, since, being our Common Father, he was thereby bound to admonish and warn his sons, and bring them to a sense of their respective duties. His Holiness then said that he would send orders to his Nuncio, now at the court of France, (fn. n5) to ask king Francis to do his utmost at the interview he intended to hold with king Henry, and persuade him to listen to the personage whom he (the Pope) would shortly send to England for the purpose of warning the King, &c. "King Francis (continued His Holiness) will, I think, be glad to interfere in this matter; yet to send any one from hence to England, without informing him of it first, is not, I fear, the right thing; besides which I believe that king Henry will not receive him."
My reply was, that I imagined that at the next conference of the two kings nothing would be discussed likely to promote the peace and welfare of Christendom, and, therefore, it seemed to me a very dangerous experiment to delay the proposed measure, or allow the French king to interfere. Nor was it necessary, in my opinion, that His Holiness should ascertain beforehand whether king Henry will receive his Nuncio or not.
I said thus much, because I knew through cardinal La Minerva that for seine days past he (the Pope) had been considering, and in fact consulting him and others, as to whether the king of England ought not to be asked first if he would, or would not, like to see at his court an ambassador from Your Majesty; "for" (said the Pope) "should the king of England refuse to see the Emperor's ambassador, there is no need for me to send him one." Knowing His Holiness' sentiments in this respect, I said to him that to save time, and just because the king of England would refuse (as he thought) to receive the Imperial ambassador, it was better to send him on without applying for permission; "for," (said I,) "knowing that the ambassador went thither by the Emperor's express commands, people in general would see Your Holiness' benevolent feeling towards the King, and, if things came to extremities, would know better how to appreciate matters, and feel indignant at the King's not choosing to listen to the Papal Nuncio, especially the English nation, the great majority of whom think that the King has acted wrongly in this matter of the divorce and second marriage."
In spite of all my arguments His Holiness did not make up his mind to send a Nuncio to England; nor do I think he will in future, unless great pressure be put on him. Indeed, it he take any steps in the matter, the utmost he will do will be to write to his Nuncio in France to bring the matter forward at the future conference of the two Kings. Thus does His Holiness think that he fulfils his duty towards His Imperial Majesty and towards the rest. I will, however, go on insisting, as if it came from myself, according to Your Majesty's instructions.
I have since spoken on the subject, to cardinal La Minerva, whose opinion in the matter is that Your Majesty may certainly send some one to the king of England, but that His Holiness cannot do so until it be first ascertained whether his Nuncio will be received or not. To the other cardinals I have had no leisure yet to speak on the subject, nor thank them individually for what they have lately done, but will do so as soon as I am disengaged. Nor have I had time yet to communicate Your Majesty's answer to the memoranda (apuntamientos) sent from hence respecting the matrimonial cause. Everything, however, shall be attended to, and the Imperial commands faithfully executed.
With regard to that part of the letter in which I am told that it is not convenient just now to push on too warmly the prosecution of the sentence, without, however, giving signs of weakness or relaxation on that score, Your Majesty's orders shall be punctually attended to. (fn. n6) I knew already that such was your desire; but having since received new orders to that effect, will take care not to precipitate matters, though, I must say, no great efforts of mine are needed; for having many a time applied for the executory letters (executoriales), they have delayed them until four days ago, when His Holiness of his own accord sent me the minute of them for inspection and approval. However, two very objectionable paragraphs having been introduced in them, as Your Imperial Majesty will be able to judge by the enclosed copy of the minute, I will keep them in my possession until Your Majesty decide on this point. Some suspect that this is done merely on purpose to delay the execution of the sentence until they hear the result of the interview, at which the king of France purposes to speak to king Henry, having most probably promised him beforehand that nothing will be said or done to his detriment.
On this very subject the Pope told me the other day that, had he not gone to the Marseilles conferences, the king of France would certainly have refused obedience to the Church, just as the king of England has done, and would have created a patriarchate in his own kingdom. He is even now afraid that some day or other king Francis will do that, because, says he, the king of England has earnestly begged him to imitate him in that respect. This the king of France himself told His Holiness, assuring him that he (Francis) had flatly refused to comply with the wishes of the English king, all the time making of that refusal a meritorious work, for which His Holiness ought to be grateful. (fn. n7)
The Ambassador's answer could not be fitter or better. My answer to such objections on the part of His Holiness has been that it is very remarkable that the Most Christian King's convictions on matters of Faith should be of such slender weight as to apprehend that he may one of these days abjure it, &c.
The Cardinal's secretary is here at Court, but since his arrival he has not spoken one single word on this matter or on any other. He goes continually about with the Duke's agent. We shall soon see whether he has anything to say on behalf of his master. My last despatch must have sufficiently explained my reasons for not speaking to His Holiness about the Council, especially at a time when we are soliciting the sentence in favour of the Queen; but since one of the articles in the instructions brought by Tello de Guzman refers particularly to the said General Council, and Your Majesty commands me again to press the subject on His Holiness, I have since done so more than once. After raising his usual objections and difficulties, and saying that this is no time to think of councils, when the affairs of Germany are so troubled, and Christendom is in so great danger, he (the Pope) promised to appoint a committee of cardinals to examine the affair and report thereon, &c. I consider it superfluous to tell Your Majesty how very disagreeable any negociations respecting a Council are for His Holiness, for Your Majesty knows it as well, nay, better than I do. Yet, that Your Majesty may judge, I will relate the following anecdote. On the night of the day when Poggio's despatch (fn. n8) arrived, His Holiness could not shut his eyes. He sent for the bishop of Geri. (fn. n9) the agent here of the duke Alessandro, and said to him, "The very moment that the duchess of Florence (Margaret) attains marriageable age, I shall not wait one single day. I will despatch a courier to the Emperor, asking for her hand for my nephew, as promised; and should the Emperor raise the least objection, or try to delay the marriage, I will have the engagement to the duke Alessandro broken off, for certainly there will not be wanting an Infanta to marry him to. (fn. n10) The person who furnished me with the above information added that he was sure the duke Alessandro, though urged by the Pope, would not do save what was Your Majesty's pleasure. I am of the same opinion; I think that whatever pressure the Pope may put on him in this, as well as in other matters, the Duke is sure to do your bidding, not only from his saying so to all those who speak to him, but because he is wise and prudent, and knows that no friendship is so beneficial to him as Your Majesty's; besides which, I am told, he is now rather discontented with His Holiness for not having attended to him in many things since his taking possession of Florence. As to the cardinal [Ippolito], the brother of Alessandro, I hear that he still persists in his old idea of renouncing the purple. He keeps saying to His Holiness that he wants to be a layman, and marry the daughter of the duchess of Camarino. To others he says that he is determined to marry her, unless Your Imperial Majesty give him the hand of the duchess of Florence (Margaret). Indeed, I am told that one of his seeretaries, lately gone to Spain, has been instructed to ask for her hand, and that the present Pope is afraid that, owing to this, the marriage of the duke Alessandro will not take place so soon, and that Your Majesty wishes to gain time by temporizing with the Cardinal, his brother. The French, on the other hand, knowing the latter's inclination and wishes, have, it is said, offered him a wife in France, and, besides that, the duchy of Namos (Nemours), which once belonged to his father (Julio). This last statement, however, is contradicted by what I once wrote to Your Majesty on the authority of the bishop of Paris, who related it to me, namely, that his master's will was that he (Ippolito) should remain cardinal, and not become a layman. The Pope has lately been trying to divert his thoughts from that by coaxing him. It would even appear that about All Saints matters were already arranged between them, on the uncle promising to increase his monthly pension by 700 ducats; but I am told that since then the Cardinal has changed his mind, and says that he does not choose to wait any longer; that he is determined not to be an ecclesiastic. I have communicated with him occasionally, and told him what I thought would tend to keep him friendly with us. I will continue doing so, as Your Majesty commands me, but he is so restless and versatile that I am afraid he will be of very little use to us. (fn. n11)
The Papal Nuncio has not declared to us His Holiness's wishes on this particular matter, because he has been unwell. When he does he (the ambassador) shall hear, and in the meantime let him follow his instructions on this point. His Holiness' answer to the proposal made by Poggio, the Nuncio, respecting the prorogation for 18 months more of the duke of Ferrara's admission into the League, has been in the negative. His Holiness will in no manner agree to it, as I am informed from an authentic quarter.
News has been received here that the Landgrave of Hesse (Philip) has collected a force of 20 or 25,000 men with which to invade the duchy of Würtemberg, and carry out other purposes, as the Lutheran that he is, the friend of the kings of France and England, and consequently the sworn enemy of the king of the Romans (Ferdinand). No sooner did I hear of it than I myself called on His Holiness, and caused the agent (fn. n12) here of king Ferdinand to come with me. We both represented to His Holiness the many evils that might come over Christendom, the probable increase of Lutheranism, and the urgent necessity there was of applying a prompt remedy. Nothing seemed to us so convenient for the purpose as the grant of a sum of money by the Pope, without which, we said, the king of the Romans could not successfully cope with the Lutherans. It was the intention of these latter to invade Italy, come to Rome, and depose him (the Pope). His Holiness, knowing the importance of the case, said that he considered the motion urgent, and would certainly help, but that his means were scanty. Would to God that his will was not scantier still than his means! for I am certain that if he assists us at all, it will be a very small assistance, nay, so small that we had better not accept it. A rumour is here current that Your Majesty, on hearing the news, dispatched colonel Tamisa with a sum of money to the king of the Romans, who has by this time a good force under arms; and that some Imperial towns, though their inhabitants had embraced Lutheranism, had shown signs of being ready to assist the King also.
If so, the ambassador must dissemble, and do all he can in favour of the Duke. The bishop of Alessandria [della Paglia] has renounced his bishopric in favour of one of the Pope's chamberlains, (fn. n13) a native of that town, who has there many relatives and friends, all of them opposed to the duke of Milan (Sforza), whose brother is actually residing at the court of France. Although the Duke's agent here applied to His Holiness not to allow the said renunciation, because of its being a scandalous affair, and injurious to the Duke, his master, the Pope, nevertheless, consented to it, on the plea that it is understood the Duke himself is in favour of the renunciation. The agent maintains the contrary, and has distinctly told His Holiness how very sorry the Duke his master will be. This latter will not give the new Bishop possession of his see, and I myself have begged His Holiness to redress an affair which may have the worst possible consequences. But his argument is that he cannot; the thing is done, and the renunciation cannot be revoked.
The viceroy of Sicily and the briefs allowing the clergy of that Island to raise a "donativo" (grant in money.)
Of the 2,000 ducats remitted for paying the fees, &c. of the sentence, 400 remain in hand.—Rome, 6 June 1534.
Signed: "El Conde Alferez." (fn. n14)
6 June. 64. The Same to the High Commander.
S. E. Roma, L. 861,
f. 10.
B. M. Add. 28,586,
f. 280.
In addition to the information contained in my despatch to the Emperor, I have to state that out of the 2,000 ducats received for the lawyer's fees (propinas), and which have been distributed with the greatest possible care, 400 still remain in hand. Should the sum borrowed be still owing to the merchants who lent it to me, let it be deducted from their bill, and I will make it up here. Perhaps, however, as further expenses will be incurred in this matter of the "executoriales" and their expedition, I ought to retain them. It is for your Lordship to decide.
There is no objection, provided the renunciation be made in favour of natives of these realms. The cardinal Camarlengo asks for permission to renounce certain ecclesiastical benefices as contained in a memorandum he is now sending home.
It has been resolved to send you the despatch, that you may use it when most convenient, and give it him. Pirro Colonna has arrived at the calling of cardinal [Ippolito] de' Medici, who, they say, sent for him. He was, I hear, much offended, and complained bitterly of the manner in which he had been treated. The grant of land which the Emperor had ordered for him had been suspended, whereas others had had their full share. People would think that the cause of this neglect was his having been found guilty of treason. Told him that the Emperor had, no doubt, done it with a view to calm the passions of the Sienese, and protecting him against them; but that the moment matters were adjusted in Siena, I had no doubt that his grant would be confirmed, since he professed to be so good an Imperialist. (fn. n15) Pirro being such a dangerous man, especially on account of the harm he can do to the Sienese—protected and encouraged as he is by the contrary party—must be temporized with. I would propose that the deed granting him an estate be sent to me to keep until he has made his peace with the people of Siena, and there is no longer fear of disturbances in that quarter, as otherwise he might, with the favour and assistance he has from these people, harass and destroy the Sienese.
The Ambassador must know by this time how averse Leyva always was to employ force, especially if the Pope had any interest there. With regard to La Mirandola, though the Pope's opinion has always been that no undertaking by force of arms should be made, he has at last decided to write a letter to abbot Negro to return and do whatever Antonio de Leyva and prothonotary Caracciolo should think proper; and as Diego de Leyva, who was the bearer of the Pope's orders, has been drowned whilst crossing a river, a duplicate has been sent by another messenger.
No news yet of what he has been able to accomplish. In consequence of the wishes expressed by the duke of Milan, by Antonio de Leyva, the prothonotary Caracciolo, and the Verulan (Ennio Filonardo), that the secretary of the latter should be sent to Switzerland, and give the Catholic cantons to understand that everything that the prior of Besançon had hitherto done was with the knowledge and consent of His Holiness, he was despatched thither, and has since received instructions to conform entirely to the Prior's acts.
The Ambassador was right in acting as he did. Leyva is to receive shortly instructions on that point. The viceroy of Sicily has written to me that 400 Spaniards from Coron had, by his order, been placed on board two vessels bound for Spain, touching first at Naples. The Viceroy [marquis de Villafranca] wrote that on no account would he receive them. The men, however, sent him word that for fear of Moorish pirates they dared not go direct to Spain, and they landed at Mola with the intention, as they said, of joining Antonio de Leyya. Ascanio Colonna having also informed me of the landing of the Spaniards [at Mola], I sent one of my servants to them, and His Holiness appointed also a commissary, in order that during their passage through the estates of the Church they should be provided with food at their own expense. Seeing, however, that they dared not go to sea again,—as they are few in number and without a captain,—I have resolved to ask the viceroy [of Naples] whether there is any means of employing them in that kingdom. Should the answer be in the negative, we (the Pope and I) will depute some one to accompany them to any part of Lombardy where Leyva may be at present.
We have written to Flanders and to Burgundy, asking for copies of the documents and deeds bearing on this affair. The Emperor's right is notoriously clear, and for the last thousand years the same thing has been done. To deny it now would be a great offence done to our master. I have lately been trying, though to no purpose whatever, for the suit at law on the abbey of Monbenoist to be remitted for judgment to the ecclesiastical court of Burgundy. His Holiness will not consent to it.
The Genoese ambassador has told me of the engagement between the troops of the king of the Romans and those of the Landgrave, which, by-the-by, the French had magnified without measure. The prior of Besançon has also written since, and forwarded papers relating to it. As I presume that your Lordship is already well acquainted by the King's chamberlain, now in Spain, with all facts, I need not enter into particulars. I will, however, go on asking His Holiness for assistance and money for two different purposes,—that people may not think that these had their origin at the conferences of Marseilles, and that we may better judge of His Holiness' tender heart.
A few days ago the duke Alessandro [de' Medici] sent one of his servants to the castle of Forli, belonging to the Church, and a very important place. The governor was the president of Romagna. Little by little the Duke's man introduced himself inside, and became warder of it. His Holiness has sent for the Duke's agent in this city, and told him to restore the castle at once; but the Duke has taken no notice of the message, and it must be said that His Holiness does not seem to take the thing much to heart.
I need scarcely tell your Lordship that neither the Pope nor his cardinals seem much pleased with our Emperor just now; the former on account of our continually reminding him of the General Council, which is the thing he dislikes most; the latter because so little has been made of them. Nor are the lawyers satisfied either, whence Your Lordship will gather how difficult is the transaction of ecclesiastical business, to say nothing of political.
His Holiness had the other day a rather severe fit of gout, accompanied by vomit, which took away his appetite and troubled him much. All those who know what I told him about the General Council fancy that the cause of his sudden indisposition was no other than my conversation with him the other day.
The deeds go by this post that the Ambassador may make such use of them as he may think proper. The moment the Sienese heard of the suspension of Pirro's grant, they gave evident signs of their unwillingness to adhere to the agreement on the point of being made, which would effectually have put an end to the differences between Pirro and them. The latter fancy that the Emperor will order the cause to be tried at Siena, not anywhere else; and that is exactly what Pirro wants to prevent, for he says that he cannot see justice done to him in that city. That is why I think, as I have told the Emperor in my despatch, that should the grant be suspended, Pirro will at once desert the Imperial service, and do all possible harm to that city.—Rome, 6 June 1534.
Signed: "El Conde de Cifuentes." (fn. n16)
Spanish. Holograph. pp. 5.
11 June. 65. The Emperor to the Prince of Melfi.
S. E., L. 29, ff. 2–3.
B. M. Add. 28,586,
f. 284.
We wrote on the 27th ult., answering your letters, and giving you instructions as to the best manner of defending Naples and Sicily from the attacks of the corsairs, called the "Jew," and "Barbarossa," as well as from the Turkish fleet.
We have since received intelligence from Germany that the landgrave of Hesse, and Count William de Furstemberg having joined the duke of Würtenberg (Ulric), at the head of a force raised, as it was said, to assist the bishop of Munster against the anabaptists, his vassals, have lately invaded the duchy of Würtenberg, from which the aforesaid Ulric, owing to his many misdeeds, was expelled and deprived by the Suabian League. The duchy having become ours, through the sale that was then carried out, we have effectually passed it over by cession to our brother, the king of the Romans, who writes that a force of 10,000 foot and 1,000 cavalry, which he had left for the defence of that duchy, had been attacked by an army much superior in number. The Palatine Philip, in command of the Royal troops, having been wounded in the encounter, our men were obliged to retreat; which was done with very little loss either in men or artillery, and in good order, the best fortresses in the whole duchy still holding out for the king of the Romans.
It is considered certain that the army of the confederated rebels has been entirely recruited with money furnished by king Francis, inasmuch as both the Landgrave and the Count went the other day, as you know, to the court of France, and took his orders as to what they were to do [in Germany], and received from his hands a, sum of 40 or 50,000 crs. Since then king Francis has remitted to them another large sum of money, on the plea that he wishes to pay for certain lands bought from duke Ulric. There can be no doubt, however, that, should the confederates take possession of the duchy, they will not stop there, but will go on interfering with matters of Faith, and possibly also go to Italy, and create disturbances there, if they only find an opportunity for doing so. Such at least seems to be the object and aim of the French just now, and the cause of their giving money to, and promoting that rebellion. Such is also the opinion of Antonio de Leyva, and of all those who have written to us on the subject. Military preparations are (they say) being made in France; Germans and Switzers are coming down; the Admiral of France (Chabot) is passing muster to the men-at-arms in Burgundy; galleys are being fitted out for sea; artillery is being cast, provisions and all other necessaries of war are being stored. Yet, although all these are signs of imminent war, it must be owned that up to the present moment, we hear of nothing positively alarming in France, with the single exception, perhaps, of this German affair, which, we are told and also believe, has been entirely got up by that King. Considering the nature and importance of this business, it seems to us as if we could not come to a rupture with the French king without ascertaining first whether what is now happening in Germany is entirely done at his instigation and with his authority, and what are that King's plans for the future; and to this end we have written to our ambassador in France, and sent to our brother, the king of the Romans, the required letters patent and provisions, commanding all those who are with the said Dukes and Landgrave to forsake and abandon them, also to the Dukes, Prince, Elector, and others of the Empire, to give assistance and help to our said brother. We have likewise remitted to him a considerable sum of money, and sincerely hope that the harm done will be rectified.
Meanwhile and during these preliminary steps we write to Antonio de Leyva to be vigilant, and take care that the duke of Milan keeps the most important fortresses in the duchy in good order, well provided with artillery and ammunition, and secures the services of 6,000 or 7,000 Germans, under experienced captains, to be ready whenever they may be wanted. Should the emergency be so great as to leave no time for consultation, then in that case Antonio will place in the most important parts of the Duchy the 1,000 Spaniards now in Lombardy, and moreover, as captain general of the Italian League, take such measures as he will consider fit and conducive to the defence of the Duchy, consulting you, and informing the Italian princes thereof, that the funds of the League may be conveniently spent for the defence of that country, as stipulated in the treaties.
The above measures to be only preventive, and whilst we ascertain what are king Francis' plans, because, once informed of them, it will be seen what had better be done, not only to oppose and counteract his plans, but to oblige him to relinquish them, and keep quiet if he can. (fn. n17)
Beginning from this hour to reflect on what measures ought to be taken in order to counteract and defeat any plans of the king of France respecting Italy, we cannot help thinking of what Antonio de Leyva and you proposed to us one day whilst discussing French affairs. We recollect very well your saying to us that in case of war it would be advisable to seize a good fortress or seaport town on the coast of France, whence we might carry on hostilities to the interior, because by so doing he (the King) would be obliged to relinquish his plans, and attend to the defence of his own kingdom. This advice we consider excellent; so much so that we from this moment take it, and command you, that, on the least rumour of war, you, in connexion with Antonio de Leyva, fix the time and place of the enterprise, taking care that it is attempted, undertaken, and executed before the enemy can be aware of it; for, what with our troops quartered in Lombardy, Naples, and Sicily, and what with those which could speedily be sent from other parts, a coup de main might easily be prepared and accomplished before the enemy was aware of it, inasmuch as the required preparations and storing of provisions might easily be assigned to Barbarossa's impending attack, &c. It also strikes us that there would be no great difficulty in seizing the French fleet of galleys, provided a fit time and opportunity should occur. Could it be done, we need not tell you of how much importance this would be for the purpose of disabling our enemy.
Should war break out, these two things ought to be attended to. We, therefore, beg and request you to consider how, when, and with what materials the above two undertakings, and each of them, can be successfully achieved; because, should the attempt prove unsuccessful, besides the consequent loss of reputation there might be cause given for the French king's using greater precautions. You ought also to consider whether your own galleys, those of Antonio Doria, as well as those of Naples, Sicily, and Monaco, having on board the infantry of Lombardy, Naples, and Sicily, and, if necessary, the Spaniards lately returned from Coron, will be a sufficient force for carrying the above two plans into execution; or whether it will be requisite to have other and larger vessels, and, if so, of what class, and what artillery, ammunition, provisions, and so forth, will be necessary.
You will communicate with Antonio de Leyva with respect to this point, but let it be in great secrecy, so that nothing transpires, for there is no other person in the world who knows of it except you and Leyva; and when you have fixed on a plan let us know immediately. Meanwhile we will write to our Ambassador at Rome (count de Cifuentes), as well as to our viceroys of Naples and Sicily, that the preparations, if any, are destined to meet the attacks of "Barbarossa" and of the "Jew," and tell them to have in store the quantity of arms, ammunition, and provisions that you and Leyva consider necessary. You will take care that everything be ready for the time you designate for the undertaking.
As Andelot, whom we now send to our brother the king of France, has orders to stop at Genoa, and talk to you about these matters, we will not say more.—Avila, 11 June 1534.
Spanish. Original minute. pp. 4.


  • n1. "Que se fera au mois daoust aux lieux ou la dernière; that is, at Calais and Boulogne.
  • n2. "Et menvoya hier dire Cromuel que deslors que se roint de retourd deux docteurs envoiez vers la dicte royne, que auroes response dont me contenteroye."
  • n3. The notes in the margin are in Cobos' hand.
  • n4. "Para quitar á aquel Rey del error en que está puesto, y atraerle á obedecer la sentencia dada por Su Santidad y Sacro Collegio de los Cardenales diciendole las causas y razones tan prudentes apuntadas por V. Md; porque aunque no se sacase otro fructo dc esta diligencia serviria para mayor justification con Dios y con el Mundo, y para haser mas favorable la justicia de la Serma Srā Reina con los mismos subditos yngleses."
  • n5. "Dixome que embiaria á su nuncio, que ahora está en Francia (?), para que hablase al rey de Francia."
  • n6. "Y en quanta á la consideracion que se ha de tener que no sientau tibieza ni flojedad en pedir la prozecucion de la sentencia de la dicha Serma Señora Reyna, y que se mire, sin embargo, á que no conviene mucha presteza en ello [ya yo] estava bien advertido, mas estarlo he agora por lo que V. Md manda."
  • n7. "Que sino fuera á las vistas de Marsella el Rey de Francia huviera quitado la obediencia a la yglesia, como lo ha hecho el de Inglaterra, haziendo un patriarca en su reyno, y que aun se temia que lo haria, porque el rey de Inglaterra se lo havia embiado á pedir, no embargante que el de Francia le havia respondido que no lo queria hazer, y qne esto mismo han hechado (sic, echaao) por cargo al papa."
  • n8. Micer Giovanni Poggio, Papal Nuncio at the Imperial Court since 1533. See above, p. 6.
  • n9. From 1519 to 1540 the auxiliary bishop of Ceri (in the Roman states) was Antonio Venanzi.
  • n10. "Que no esperaria un solo dia de embiar á V. Md un correo propio demandandogela, y si V. Md lo ponia en dissimulation de querer alargar esta cosa, que no faltaria al dicho duque una infanta."
  • n11. Yo le doy parte de algunas cosas que me paresce para entretenerle, y lo hare de aqui en adelante por mandamiento de v[uest]ra md., aunque le tengo por tan inquieto que aprovechará poco."
  • n12. Gabriel Sanchez.
  • n13. "El obispo de Alexandria ha renunciado el obispado á un camarero del Papa, que es de aquella ciudad, y [hombre] de muchos parientes [y amigos], todos ellos deservidores del duque de Milan, que tiene un hermano con el rey de Francia." The bishop here named was Pallavicino Visconti, who in 1533 resigned his bishopric in favour of one Ottaviano Guasco, who succeeded him from May 1534 to April 1564.
  • n14. That is the Count, pennon bearer [of Castille], On the meaning of the word "Alferez," and the dignity implied by it, see vol. iv. part ii. p. 888.
  • n15. "Que Su Md lo habria hecho por verle libre de las passiones que tiene con Seneses, pero que dandose orden en ellas y sabido de quan firme está en el servicio de V. Md le mandaria despachar la dicha merced."
  • n16. Of this despatch of the Count there are two copies in Bergenroth's Collection, vol. xv.; one of them at fol. 262, the other at fol. 272. The latter, however, which is only an abstract (relacion) for the Emperor's perusal, has marginal notes, or rather observations, by Cobos, to each paragraph.
  • n17. "Se mirará lo que converná no solo para estorbar el fin de sus intenciones y desseos mas aun para constreñirle que se dexe de ellos, y tenga por bueno de reposar si pudiere."