Spain: June 1535, 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 1535, 1-15', Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 5 Part 1, 1534-1535, (London, 1886), pp. 475-491. British History Online [accessed 15 June 2024].

. "Spain: June 1535, 1-15", in Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 5 Part 1, 1534-1535, (London, 1886) 475-491. British History Online, accessed June 15, 2024,

. "Spain: June 1535, 1-15", Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 5 Part 1, 1534-1535, (London, 1886). 475-491. British History Online. Web. 15 June 2024,

June 1535, 1-15

5 June. 170. Eustace Chapuys to the Emperor.
Rep. P.C.,
Fasc. 229½.
After the two first conferences held by the King's deputies, the sieur de Rochefort left Calais, and arrived here the 15th ult. Before going to the King, he called on his sister (Anne), and had a long talk with her; yet the news he brought from Calais could not be very agreeable, for the Grand Esquire tells me that then and there, and ever since, the lady has not ceased inveighing against the king of France, and the French in general. On the 15th, and on the 17th, which was the day of Corpus Christi, the King and his Council were closely engaged in consultation, as is generally believed, respecting the news brought by Rochefort; both King and Council being so disappointed at it that they could not conceal their discontent. Nor has the French ambassador here escaped his share of the annoyance caused by Rochefort's sudden return from Calais, for the latter brought no news for him, and he himself was not summoned to Court; to which may be added that on Corpus Day, he remained at Cromwell's lodging from the afternoon till 10 o'clock at night, waiting for that Secretary's return from Court, who, as he himself told me, dispatched him with two words, the ambassador leaving the house sad and dejected." (fn. n1)
On the 28th, Master Cromwell came twice to my lodgings, not having found me at his first call; and thoughtful and annoyed, as he seemed to be, he told me point-blank, among other things, that from the very day the French deputies entered Calais, they began to protest that their intention was not to promote war [against Your Majesty]. They had continued to hold the same language until the said Rochefort had left Calais; but the moment his back was turned, they had turned round, and, as the duke of Norfolk wrote, thought and spoke of nothing else but war. Cromwell at first would not tell me what country they intended to attack first, and yet after some time he declared to me that Milan was meant.
As a further proof of confidence, Cromwell showed me a paper, which he said had come enclosed in a letter from the admiral of France to him,—though I must say that the paper was unsigned, and had not the appearance of having thus been enclosed—and volunteered to read it to me. The contents of which were, substantially, that the king of France, after most diligent examination and debate of this King's right and justice respecting the validity of his two marriages, had come to the conclusion that the first had been illegal, and against divine right, whilst the second was quite legitimate and rightful, and that he promised, in his own name and in that of his successors to the French crown, to maintain and uphold the latter marriage, and procure the revocation of the sentence pronounced against it by the Apostolic See.
The reading over, I could not help smiling and saying to Cromwell that the French knew very well what they were about, and that certainly they would not make such promises, unless they did know beforehand what bargain (fn. n2) they were to get, and that after obtaining what they wanted, they would know well how to wash their hands out of the whole affair. That to do that they (the French) had several means and ways apparent enough, besides plenty of time before them, for the fulfilment of the said promises. But since the king of France had so carefully examined all the marriage deeds, the best thing for you to do was to forward them to Calais; for, having already the promise of so great a prince as the king of France, as he is closely allied to the Queen, the King, who alleges as an excuse the fear he has of Your Majesty's kinsmen and relatives, could have no possible objection to submit the whole affair to the deliberation of the Council.
Hearing this, Cromwell knew not what to reply; but the truth is, that I doubt much that the paper in question really comes from France. On the contrary, I believe it to have been written and forged in this country to pass it over to king Francis; otherwise, how reconcile the contents of the paper with the fact of a very worthy personage in this country having sent word to the Princess that the French intended to have her married to their Dauphin, a report which is also current at the French embassy? Another reason for suspecting the authenticity of the paper is what the King himself has been heard to say with reference to the Admiral, namely, that on his arrival at Calais he had written to him to say that nothing was so true as that the first idea of this marriage had originated with Your Majesty, who had been the first to propose it.
Respecting the war in the Milanese, I told Cromwell that it was not likely that the king of France could wish at this time to disturb Your Majesty's very holy enterprise against the Turk; for, besides the great difficulty of an attack on Milan just now, the French kept saying that they wished to observe existing treaties. Even in the event of king Francis conquering that duchy, he would still require more than ever Your Majesty's friendship, and accept any conditions whatever to keep it. I said this much to Cromwell, lest he should think that such threats could influence Your Majesty to accede to their proposals.
I made every possible effort to ascertain from Cromwell what conditions the French asked for in return for their offers. Among other things, I inquired of him whether they had actually demanded hostages, owing to the Princess not being yet of age to marry, or whether they had solicited the stoppage of all pensions in the meantime. His answer was that, respecting the first point, there had been no question; of the second there had been some (said he, grumbling without further declaring himself). But the day after he added, "If the French fancy that they can have our substance, they are very much mistaken; instead of pension they shall have passion, that is, war." (fn. n3) The affair of the hostages I brought forward, because I have heard that one of the conditions asked by the French was that the Princess should be placed in their hands. In order to convince me that there would be no difficulty for the French to fulfil all and every one of the offers they had made, nay, grant anything that might be asked of them, Cromwell said that the Freneh would not dare do otherwise, considering they had lost the friendship and sympathy of almost all the European princes. On the side of Germany they had lost all hope; as to Switzerland, they did not know how badly their affairs were going on. Hearing this, I failed not to confirm everything he had said in that line, not forgetting to extol and praise his consummate political wisdom; and then I added, "Since God has endowed you with so much good sense and perspicuity, it will be a shame for you not to seize this opportunity." This I said to him, for the mystery which Your Majesty will better understand.
After this Cromwell said to me, that, notwithstanding the French offers, should there be the least hope of arriving at the restoration of the former friendship and understanding with Your Majesty, the French would get a more sharp and short answer than the one they had received to their overtures, though they would, still preserve the friendship of that nation. That, in expectation of news from Your Majesty, he (Cromwell) had kept Rochefort in England, to the Admiral's great annoyance and disappointment; and that, hoping the affairs we had discussed together would come to a favourable issue, he would take care that the said Rochefort should not return to Calais so soon, and, if he did, that nothing should be done at the conferences likely to turn to Your Majesty's prejudice, and prevent the restoration of the former friendship between Your Majesty and the King, his master. To which he added that the King's ambassador in France had written to say that Mr. de Lickerke, hearing of the answer made to Your Majesty's overtures, had immediately dispatched a courier to Spain, and was daily waiting for a satisfactory answer to his missive, provided, however, you had not left Barcelona before the 26th of May. (fn. n4) And, morever, that this King and his Privy Councillors (who in this matter seem to be at their wits' end) desired me to think in the meanwhile of the terms and means to ensure the success of so notable and necessary a work as that of bringing about the said restoration, giving me to understand that I myself could do it much better than all the rest, and hoping I would be the King's good and true adviser and counsellor on the occasion.
In order to gain time, and amuse these people with words, I abstained, during the above conversation, from renewing my former declaration, and again telling Cromwell that I saw no other means of again cementing the said friendship and alliance than the one I had once proposed; I went on to say, after excusing my inability in the matter, that I would do my best to forward his views, though I really knew not how they intended working towards the accomplishment of our common object, since there had been no amendment that I knew of in the condition of the Queen and Princess, and the King his master showed in every respect more coldness than he had hitherto done. "I recollect very well," said I to him, "that when the earl of Vulchir (Wiltshire) was going on an embassy to the Emperor, my master, the duke of Norfolk affirmed that the King would willingly become, as it were, His Majesty's slave, provided his divorce were granted; nay, would, in atonement for his sins and for the relief of his conscience, devote to God's service and the benefit of Christendom part of his fortune and wealth; whereas now-a-days, when the cause has been finally decided at Rome, and when more brilliant offers may and ought to be made, I can see no appearance of further and more advantageous offers on his part." I added, that the last time I had spoken to the King, whilst alluding to some of his predecessors who had conquered Rhodes and achieved a thousand deeds of prowess in the conquest of the Holy Land, and telling him that he was as capable of doing that as any of his predecessors on the throne, he answered me, coldly enough, that it was no longer the time to accomplish such feats of arms, and that his predecessors had been better situated than he was through their holding Guyenne in France. Of which royal answer, however, I had not informed Your Majesty at the time, though I had, nevertheless, written home to say that the King had publicly assured the admiral of France and many others of that ambassador's suite that the money which he had taken and intended to take from the clergy of his dominions was exclusively destined to wage war on the Infidel, and for other pious purposes.
Cromwell's answer was, that as soon as there was a hope of arriving at the said restoration, the Queen and the Princess would be most favourably treated.
With regard to the King's statement that he was too far off to join in an expedition against the Infidel, that was perfectly true; the King recollected the circumstance well, so much so that, in conversation with him some time back, he had made a similar declaration; "but you ought not" (said Cromwell) "to take that as the King's final resolution, for, once his proposals accepted, he would be as ready to march personally and join in an undertaking against the Infidel as any other prince in the world, and would besides have the means of going thither at the head of a considerable force, for he has contrived to amass incalculable treasure already." Indeed, he (Cromwell) assured me that, in addition to the sums of money the King has already received for the grant of ecclesiastical benefices since January, he has in his possession obligations amounting to about five hundred thousand ducats, (fn. n5) making more than the sum already received. He went further: he said that the King had lately become so fond of hoarding, that, exclusive of several other means he has in his power of increasing his treasure, and having nothing to spend his money upon, all the gold and silver of England will ultimately fall into his hands, to the great injury of private individuals. Not only England, but Flanders and France, would unavoidably feel the want of that treasure, which the King once spent during his wars with the latter country, and that is why I and other privy councillors are now looking out for the means of checking this King's avarice, and making him spend his money for the benefit of the nation."
Cromwell tells me that the German, about whom I wrote lately to Your Majesty, (fn. n6) had been sent by the duke of Mechlenbourg, with a simple letter of credence, and a present to defray the expenses of his journey, but that he had not seen or spoken to the King. As to the Lubeckian secretary he had also been dispatched. The King would no longer trouble himself with the affairs of that country, which, he said, could not turn out well, considering that their town was divided into three opposite parties. The King himself has since told me that he ignored who the German was, nor where he came from, and when I mentioned it to him he immediately changed the conversation. (fn. n7)
On Saturday, the 29th ultimo, Your Majesty's letters of the 10th were received, together with that addressed to this King. I immediately apprized Cromwell of it, who would have wished me to go myself to Court next morning to present them; but I made my excuses, saying that on that day I had to remain indoors and take medicine. I said so because on Sundays everyone goes to Court here, and if most of those who will be there, saw me presenting letters from Your Majesty, and heard from those about the King's person that you, were negotiating, the rumour might well get about that Your Majesty was on the point of coming to some understanding with this King respecting the relative positions of the Queen and Princess.
On Monday, after dinner, I presented Your Majesty's letter to the King, by whom I was received with much benevolence. Having perused it, he asked me whether I had other news. I answered in the negative, saying that all I knew was that Your Majesty had placed a galley at the disposal of his and the French ambassador for their greater ease and comfort. The King showed much pleasure at this, but replied that he wondered why his ambassador, who had written on the 12th, did not mention anything about it. After this and other talk the King alluded to the late news of the defeat of the Turk by the Sophy of Persia, saying that what people said about it was all fable and invention, for he knew from authentic quarters, as well in Venice as in France and Spain, that the contrary was the case; besides which it was highly improbable that so powerful a prince as the Turk was should be vanquished by the Sophy, and that, even if Solyman had lost two or three hundred thousand men in battle, he would not feel it in the least, being so rich and powerful. Not satisfied, however, with making the above affirmation, as if he were sure of the facts, the King, by way of giving vent to his excited feelings, proceeded to say, "Many think that the conquest of the territory the Turk holds in Europe will be an easy task owing to its being inhabited by Christians. But they are mistaken; those of my subjects who frequent that coast for mercantile purposes tell me that, had there been Christians in or about Coron, the defence of that town might have been easier, whereas the Emperor was obliged to abandon it altogether.
My answer was, that the news of the Turk's signal defeat had come from so many quarters that there must have been some foundation for it; and since to affirm or deny that news was a matter of indifference, and did not alter the case, it was useless to dispute about it. Each party might construe the report according to his wishes; for my own part, I was sure that he (the King), whatever might be said to the contrary, would have been glad of the Turk's defeat, knowing how nearly the thing concerned not only Your Majesty, but likewise all princes and powers in Christendom; and that whoever had falsely reported to him that there were no Christians in Greece or the neighbouring countries, ought to be severely punished for it. As to the abandonment of Coron, I answered him in the precise words Your Majesty pointed out to me at the time, adding of my own accord that, even if there had been no other cause for forsaking that enterprise than the backwardness of several princes, that would have been enough, since to provoke and goad the Turk without any visible advantage to accrue therefrom would be great folly. To which argument the King knew not what to reply, but went on to speak of Your Majesty's galley, with its xxvii. tiers of oars, boasting that he himself would soon have one built with 100, of a form and shape quite unknown to prince Messire Andrea Doria. Having interrogated him as to the number of oars each bench would carry, he answered "one in each" very obstinately affirming that in each galley there, could only be one oar for each bench, so that, this time at least, the King's assertion was founded on a paradox. (fn. n8)
All the time the King laid stress on the legions that were being levied in France, and on the fortifications which the French had raised and were continually raising on their frontiers, saying that the legions were principally intended for the defence of the country during the time the King might be engaged in Italy or elsewhere, and that the levy had been planned during the Calais conference. He likewise spoke of the defences which he himself had ordered to be made at that town, and of those he has commenced at Dover, together with the construction of one of the most splendid harbours in the world. Which projects of fortification make me attach still greater faith to the report that this King calculates upon being left in peace during next summer, that no attack will be directed against him in the winter, and that in the forthcoming spring and summer he will be so far prepared and strengthened as to fear no one.
To the above threatening news the King added that Your Majesty had once, according to common report, thought of going to Naples, rather than to Tunis, but that you had considered the matter, and had decided for the latter, and that would have been too hazardous an enterprise for Your Majesty, from whom so great things were expected running such a personal risk.
At last, perceiving that the King seemed to avoid speaking of the negotiations that were on foot, I took upon myself to allude to them slightly, only remarking that Master Cromwell had, no doubt, informed him of our conversations on the subject. I would not (I said) trouble him on that account further than to say that he would always find Your Majesty inclined and ready to do him pleasure, and come to a good understanding with him, as far as your honour and conscience permitted. Upon which he said that he would very much like to be able to say as much, and that, trusting in Your Majesty's readiness to come to terms with him, he had until now retained Rocheford. He could not detain him any longer in England owing to the Admiral being in despair at his protracted delay, and because the French boasted of being on the point of invading the Milanese, and were soliciting him to join in the dance; to which proposal, however, he had refused to listen. He then gave me to understand that the Pope's hostile measures against the duke of Urbino were secretly promoted by the French. And upon my demonstrating to him, as I had formerly done to Cremuel, how unlikely it was that the French should now attack Milan, he replied, "That may well be, but still they talk about it, and have asked me to join the enterprise."
After this the King asked about the cardinal of Liege, (fn. n9) and whether the duke of Gheldres (fn. n10) was on good terms with Your Majesty or not; and upon my replying that I had no news to the contrary, he remarked that the French boasted of the Duke having revoked all his treaties with Your Majesty, and intending to make the king of France heir to his estate; and that although he considered it a difficult task for the French to take possession of his duchy, yet the matter might give rise to quarrel and contention. My answer was that as Your Majesty held the country of Utrecht, and that of Ouvrissel, Mr. de Gheldres was not likely to stir, and that if he were only paid certain arrears which he claimed, he would remain quiet. (fn. n11) In my opinion, I said, there was no other cause of discontent between Your Majesty and him.
The King after that having hinted that unless further news of Your Majesty's intentions towards him were received, he was afraid that he should be unable to evade the pressing solicitations of the French, and be compelled to treat with them, I answered that both he and the king of France being such honourable and virtuous princes, there was no fear of any of them undertaking anything against the letter of the treaties concluded and ratified. Hearing this, the King was much surprised, and kept silence for some time; imagining, as I presume, that I was about to beg him to put off or suspend his negociations with the French, and throw out some hope of his obtaining from Your Majesty the object of his wishes.
With regard to Your Majesty's instructions, commanding me to gain time with these people, and dexterously continue to renew the overtures as long as the Calais conferences and Your Majesty's expedition [to Tunis] lasts, I will faithfully observe your orders, and carefully shape my answers in accordance with the instructions received. In the same manner, the revolution in Ireland became a subject of conversation; without my forgetting, however, to make inquiries as to the best means of getting the Princess out of the country, who, as well as the Queen, her mother, has been very much pleased and comforted to hear of your prosperous journey to those parts, (fn. n12) as well as of the remembrance you have of their affairs, out of gratitude for which they do not cease praying God for your prosperity and happiness.
I forgot to mention that, whilst talking of the Palatine Frederic and his marriage, (fn. n13) the King said to me that he wondered much what title that prince would assume in Denmark, for that kingdom being elective, the Princess his wife had no right whatever to it. And upon my answering him that if the Duke wished to fill the throne of that country, he would certainly have a better title to it than the people of Lubeck, especially if he took it in his own name or as delegate and administrator in that of his father-in-law, and that in elective kingdoms election never takes place when there are descendants in the right line, he said nothing, but kept silence.
Cremuel said lately to me that were the Lady to know the familiar terms on which he and I are, she would surely try to cause us both some annoyance, and that only three days ago she and he had had words together, the Lady telling him, among other things, that she would like to see his head off his shoulders. "But," added Cromwell, "I trust so much on my master, that I fancy she cannot do me any harm." I cannot tell whether this is an invention of Cromwell in order to enhance his merchandise. All I can say is, that everyone here considers him Anne's right hand, as I myself told him some time ago. Indeed, I hear from a reliable source that day and night is the Lady working to bring about the duke of Norfolk's disgrace with the King; whether it be owing to his having spoken too freely about her, or because Cromwell, wishes to bring down the aristocracy of this kingdom, and is about to begin by him, I cannot say. (fn. n14)
About twenty anabaptists from Holland have been arrested here, out of which number thirteen have already been sentenced to the stake, and will be burnt in different parts of the kingdom, as the King himself, and Cromwell also, have announced to me. The remainder, who have been reconciled to the Church, will be sent to Flanders, for the queen [of Hungary] to do as she pleases with them.—London, 5th June 1535.
Signed: "Eustace Chapuys."
French. Original. Almost entirely in cipher. pp. 18.
5 June. 171. The Same to Nicolas de Granvelle.
Rep. P.C.,
Fasc. 229½, iii.
f. 10.
In my opinion the rumours that the French are inviting the English to declare war against the Emperor are only intended by the former to bring pressure to bear on our lord and master.
This King declares that he is expecting a gentleman from the king of France, whose name is Saint Ambroz, the very same person who was arrested last year at Brussels, on his return from the court of the duke of Ghelders—to whom he had taken a sum of money sent him by king Francis. I must add that the Lubeckian secretary has in his possession a letter for the said Saint Ambroz, sealed with arms resembling those of Geldres (Ghelders).
In Scotland the discovery has been made of certain treasonable intelligence which the people of that country had with the English during the last war; and it is rumoured that two relatives of the earl of Angus (Douglas) have already been sentenced to death on that account.
I fancy that you will get quicker news by way of France than through me about the negociations at Calais, and therefore will not allude to them here, but refer you to my despatches. I will only add, that Norfolk has been instructed to acquaint the English ambassador (Wallop) how matters stand between us and this King, that the former may shape his conduct accordingly in his negociations with Mr. de Likerke. As Wallop is so friendly to us, Likerke will be able to hear from him what is going on. Upon the whole, I perceive that these people prefer negociating indirectly in Paris rather than with me, who knows them so thoroughly.—London, 5 June 1535.
Signed: "Eustace Chapuys."
French. Holograph. Partly in cipher. pp. 2.
5 June. 172. Cardinal Contarino to the Same.
S.E., L. 1,311,
f. 138.
B. M. Add. 28,587,
f. 323.
God, by his Divine bounty, having been pleased to call me into his service, by making His Holiness the Pope promote me, "motu proprio," to the Cardinalate last Easter, without my ever having applied for it, I consider it my duty to kiss Your Majesty's hands by letter, unable as I am to do it personally, as befits an affectionate servant.
At the time that I was orator of the most Illustrious Signory of Venice, near Your Majesty, I had many opportunities to admire Your Majesty's most singular virtues, and your very sincere devotion to God and to his Church. Thus I am the more induced and bound to write to Your Majesty, now that an occasion offers itself of doing service to Christ and to his religion.
For many years past have I known by reputation, and more lately by continual and most familiar intercourse, an English youth, great by his illustrious birth and royal descent, but greater still by the very singular virtues with which he is endowed, whose name is Sir Reginald Pole. Passing over the learning and doctrine as well as other good qualities which adorn the nobleman in question, I will only speak now of his great faith and piety, for he thinks of nothing save doing some act by which God and the whole of Christendom may be benefited. Regardless of fatigue or of danger to his person, and taking example by the early Christians, he considers martyrdom the greatest boon that can be obtained in this world. This Christian and gentle lord, seeing his own country, England, in such a state of perdition, and that His Highness, the King, deceived by false persuasions, has fallen into great error, has separated himself from the mystical body of Christ and of his Church, and deviated beyond measure from Christian truth, besides leading altogether an unchristian life, entirely opposed to his kind, humane, and generous nature, has resolved, not indeed by force of arms, nor by promoting troubles in his own country, but merely by ways of peace and persuasion, to help the King and his kingdom, which he sees are in imminent danger of being ruined for ever.
The way in which the said Reginald intends carrying out the above resolution Your Majesty will hear from the bearer of this letter, one of his suite, who goes there for the purpose in pursuance of Your Majesty's orders. (fn. n15)
Signed: "Gaspar Cardlis Contarenus."
Addressed: "Alla S. Ces. Catholica Mta."
Italian, Original. pp. 4.
173. The Privy Council to the Emperor.
P. Arch. Nat. Neg.
P. de S., K. 1484,
123 olim, B. 3,
No. 17.
B. M. Add. 28,588,
f. 161.
Taking for granted what the Imperial ambassador in France writes respecting his conversation with the English one at that Court, respecting the differences existing between the Emperor and the king of England in consequence of the divorce, the following points ought to be considered.
1st. The great injury which the said king of England is doing to the Queen and the Princess, her daughter, without the least possible excuse, even after the sentence and irrevocable declaration of the Holy See; the very binding obligation under which the Emperor is of protecting the said Princesses, mother and daughter, as much for the dignity of the position he himself occupies in Christendom as for the state of oppression in which the two said Princesses are living; and, last not least, the degree of affinity and relationship that unites him with them, their many virtues, the Queen's good offices and behaviour towards the King, her husband, her singular friendship and love for His Imperial Majesty, and the unbounded confidence and trust which both mother and daughter have placed in him alone,—all these are matters of great importance, and well deserving of mature deliberation. For should His Imperial Majesty respond to the overtures made by the English ambassador in France respecting his master's desire to bring the present dispute to a satisfactory end, whatever composition or arrangement His Imperial Majesty might feel inclined to make with the said king of England, might perhaps create an unfavourable impression throughout Christendom, and possibly drive the said princesses to despair, and principally the English people, who have hitherto been greatly in their favour. As the arrangement, if effected, might alienate the affections of those who have always been and are still desirous that the Princess [Mary] should succeed her father on the throne, and might also afford other princes occasion and encouragement to promote similar divorces—out of which much evil and confusion might arise—nothing should, in our opinion, be done before ascertaining whether really and truly the English ambassador has instructions to that effect, or whether he talks without foundation, or at least without his master's express mandate, for the purpose of sounding the Emperor's intentions on the subject, and then having his answer published, thus making it a weapon against the Emperor. On the other hand, the state in which the public affairs of Christendom are, must be weighed and considered, as well as the impediments which king Francis' malignity is continually throwing in the Emperor's path by his firm adhesion to the king Henry, whose obstinacy and wilful blindness have so increased of late through his new marriage that not only has His Majesty no means of reducing him by force, but, on the contrary, should he persevere in his present behaviour, he may be driven to despair on matters of Faith, impede the Council, and consequently the remedy expected from it. The King might, besides, join the king of France, assist him in doing his worst against the Empire, and throw all manner of impediments in His Majesty's path. (fn. n16) Indeed, both being as they are mighty and powerful princes, and carrying on most damnable practices without any regard to conscience or honesty, might, if united with the separatists, place His Majesty in great perplexity and need, cause him unbearable trouble and expense, to no profit whatever of the said princesses, who might be worse treated, if not altogether put out of the way, without His Majesty being able to help them now or at any future time.
Should there be any probability of entering into a negociation of this kind, (fn. n17) it could only be done under condition of the king of England suspending, or at least modifying his acts in matters concerning the Faith, ceasing to adhere, as he does at present, to the king of France, abstaining from any movements against Flanders, and, last not least, forsaking the intelligences he has in Denmark, Lubeck, and other Hanseatic towns. Of course he should promise that the Princesses, both mother and daughter, shall be better treated in future, and their persons more secure. During this interval of time the marriage of the Princess might be effected to greater advantage; perhaps, too, God might inspire the King with the idea of quitting the state of blindness, hardness of heart, and confusion in which he now is, and again living in conjugal life with his Queen; for, were this to be attempted in any other way, by force and violence—which condition and state of things is not to be thought of for the present—queen Katharine would be in a worse state than before, and in much greater danger.
The least suspicion that could be engendered between France and England might serve to moderate the obstinate determination of the French king to make war, and thus lead to a convention or treaty being made with the one or the other of the two kings, or with both, as may be deemed fit and convenient, especially if His Imperial Majesty gains a victory against Barbarossa—which, with God's help, will surely be achieved, unless the kings of France and England impede it—bring about the convocation and meeting of the Council, which might after all bring order and rule and remedy in all things. The negociations, however, to be carried on in such wise, and with such dexterity and prudence, that the whole affair may not offend God or be ill-judged by men, and that the said Princesses, and those who bear them good will, may perceive that the aforesaid negociations are meant for the greater comfort and welfare of the two. (fn. n18)
Whether, in case of the king of England inclining, as his ambassador says, to a negociation of this kind, commission and mandate should be given to viscount Hannaërt to treat with him at once after sending him from hence proper instructions to that effect,—or whether it be more advisable that, after encouraging the English ambassador to believe that on the part of the Emperor's ministers there is perfect good will to conduct the negociation, he (Hannaërt) should tell the ambassador that the answer he has received from Spain is quite as satisfactory as that which the English ambassador in France says he has received from his master (fn. n19) —and that then the Viscount should try to ascertain, as far as he could, what security the king of England was ready to grant for the greater benefit and advantage of the two said ladies, the Queen and the Princess, and for the removal of difficulties in matters of Faith and others. In short, that being done, the Emperor's ambassadors and those of the king of England might respectively take up the negotiation, and report its progress from time to time.
Or whether it would be preferable that the Imperial ambassador at the court of France, using, as aforesaid, language calculated to facilitate and forward the said negotiation, and trying to ascertain the King's real intentions, should get the whole matter entrusted to the Imperial ambassador residing in London, and that the English one at the French court should write [home] that he is ready to listen to our overtures. Then Chapuys, who knows the manners of the English, and who seems to have some credit at Court, and is in good relations with them, may tell us whether the thing has any foundation; and, in case of his saying so, direct the negociation with discretion, in the first place, to secure the attachment of king Henry and prevent his adhering to king Francis, and helping him in war against Your Majesty. Considering also that should the negociation be transferred from France to England, the commission to the Imperial ambassador in France would no longer be wanted, for otherwise much time would be lost, which is the thing mostly to be avoided, if the bad designs of king Francis are to be counteracted. (fn. n20)
In case of the negotiations actually commencing in France or in England, it is to be considered whether a suspension of the proceedings in the divorce suit should not to be granted; and, if it is, for what period of time: if during the life of the present king of England, or only till the meeting of the General Council (considering that both the one and the other are matters uncertain). Whether the suspension is to be only for a limited space of time, and under such conditions as may seem most fit, as, for instance, and principally, that pending the negociation the said princesses be well and honourably treated as befits their condition and quality, also the formal declaration that they are not to be compelled hereafter to make treaties or stipulations of any sort without the knowledge and consent of Your Imperial Majesty, and, above all, that the Princess (Mary) shall not be married without the permission of the Queen, her mother, and of Your Majesty, as well as of her other relatives, whatever may be the wishes and inclination of her father, the king of England, in that respect. The King not to promote or give assistance, directly or indirectly, to any measures against the Emperor, or the king of the Romans, his brother, nor against their kingdoms, dominions, or vassals in general, but to prevent, with all his power and might, other princes from waging war on him, as contained in former treaties between His Imperial Majesty and the King for the mutual defence of their respective dominions. To put aside all negotiations and practises in Germany, as well as in Denmark, Lubeck, and other Hanseatic towns; and in a like manner the said king of England not to ill-treat, or allow those to be ill-treated, or in any wise molested, who have hitherto aknowledged and supported the just claims of the said Queen and Princess.
Whether we ought or not to consent to the declaration of the divorce being referred to the future Council, to which the king of England has appealed from the sentence delivered at Rome, for though the King might very well wish it for the relief of his own conscience, and by way of an apology and excuse to his mistress (Anne) and her relatives, "yet, on the other hand, should the King persist in his obstinacy, it might prove an obstacle to the holding of the Council." (fn. n21)
Should the King insist upon the suspension of the sentence during his natural life, or at least ask that no force should be used, it is highly important to know whether, besides the conditions above specified, it would be advisable to grant him that one, and also induce the Queen to do the same, though reserving for herself, as aforesaid, her right to justice, and such remedy as the future Council might afford; also, on condition that in the meantime the Princess should not be married without the consent of her mother and of the Emperor and other relatives, but, on the contrary, accept with their consent any favourable match proposed, and keep the rights belonging to her for after her father's death, considering that, as above stated, it would be far preferable that the Queen should be well treated and away from the concubine, than living under the King's roof, and daily insisting on her daughter being restored to her until her marriage.
Whether any insistance should be made on the king of England returning to the obedience of Mother Church and the Apostolic See, and on his favouring and helping the meeting of the future Council, without, however, insisting, should there be no Council, upon his declaring that he was inclined to it, (fn. n22) because in reality such a declaration would be rather bad than good, considering that this particular business of the Queen and Princess, as well as the said suspension of force, do not precisely bear upon any of the above points, except, perhaps, as far as the execution of the sentence itself, which entirely depends upon the will of the parties concerned.
Whether the Imperial ambassador residing in England ought to be instructed that whilst he speaks of Your Majesty's desire to preserve the friendship and alliance of the English king, he should try to ascertain if there be any foundation for the overtures which this King's ambassador in France has made to viscount Hannaërt, proposing to him the means above specified, or others likely to be accepted by the King, since he (the Imperial ambassador) is known to be both wise and discreet, and not likely to exceed his instructions.
Whether some gracious words ought not to be said to the English ambassador residing at this court, under pretence of announcing to him Your Majesty's departure for Barcelona, and telling him that Your Majesty will not go to war with any one Christian prince, unless positively compelled to it; adding, if the said ambassador deemed it convenient and opportune, that Your Majesty wishes to be the King's friend. At the same time, showing what you yourself have done for him, without your ever having given him occasion to treat him otherwise than kindly and affectionately. (fn. n23)
Whether it would be advisable for the aforesaid ambassador to try and inquire, as though originating with himself, taking for an excuse the overtures of the English ambassador at this court, how far the Queen would approve of the said negociation being commenced; although, on the other hand, it might be objected that such a step might place the mother and daughter in still greater anguish than they are now, and make them believe that there is no other hope or chance of success than that which the negociation itself may afford.
In addition to the above considerations it is important to decide whether, in the state in which English affairs are at present,—when his Imperial Majesty is engaged in war against Barbarossa, and the French king's doings and intentions are what we all know them to be—it would not be advisable to throw as many impediments as possible in the way of the king of England, in his own kingdom and elsewhere, so as to oblige him by fear to become our friend and ally. If so, His Majesty might, in order to save his reputation, and at the same time redeem his word pledged to the Irish lords, dispatch to them a messenger with instructions; taking, however, into consideration that the person sent must be in Ireland by next March, that the season is now far advanced, and that if such a. person is to be sent thither, that cannot be conveniently done except some time before His Majesty's departure from this town. (fn. n24)
Spanish. Original minute. pp. 7. (fn. n25)


  • n1. "Lambassadeur de France na este sans avoir sa part de la dicte facherie du retour du dict Rocheffort pour autant quil ne luy appourta nulles nouvelles et quil ne fut point appele en Court, ioinct que le dict iour du corps de dieu depuis lapres dine il actendit au logis de Cremuel jusques a x. heures de nuyct actendant que iceluy Cremuel revint de court, et luy dit des nouvelles, et a ce que me recita le dict cremuel il le despecha en deux parolles, et sen partit bien triste et desplesant."
  • n2. "Que les françois sçauoient bien ce quilz faisoient et quilz ne promectoient telles choses quilz ne sçussent certainement pour combien laulne."
  • n3. "Et entre autres luy demanday sil estoit question que les dicts françois voulsissent hostagiers, actendu que la fille estoit encoires ieusne, et de ce pendant faire cesser le cours de leurs pension. Il me dit quant au premier, quil nen estoit nul propoz, ouy bien quant au second (ce disoit-il engrondissant sans dire plus oultre); mais le lendemain il y adiousta que si les françoys se iouyoint de vouloir avoir leur pension, ilz auroient quant a quant la passion, assauoir la guerre."
  • n4. Charles sailed from Barcelona in the beginning of May, and was at Menorca, one of the Balearic islands, on the 3rd of June.
  • n5. "Que le dict roy son maistre oultre ce quil avoit reçus en content (sic au comptant?) des benefices quil a pourveu dois ianvier en ça, il avoit des obligacions pour plus du total payement, que montoient environ vem. ducats."
  • n6. The duke's name was Henry.
  • n7. "Ce roy ma depuis dit quil ne sçauoit proprement qui le dict allemand estoit ny de ou, et incontinent changea propoz que luy en parlay."
  • n8. Ains passa a parler de la quadrireme de vostre maieste, questoi a xxvii. bancqs, disant quil en feroit fere une de cent bancqs, et de forme incognue au prince messire andrea doria; et linterrogeant combien de remes il y auroit par bancq, il me repondit une, me affirmant tres obstineement que en une gallere ny avoit ne pouvoit auoir plus dune reme pour bancq, de sorte que pour ceste heure le dict roy fust du tout fonde en paradoxes." Sandoval Hist. del Emp. Carlos V., lib. xxii., p. 217, describes minutely the Imperial galley, on board of which the Emperor crossed the sea to Cagliari in Sardinia, and thence to the African shores. "It was (he says) a 'bastard galley,' of 26 benches or tiers of oars, four in each tier, whence her name la quadrireme Imperial. It was Andrea Doria who had her built at Genoa for the Emperor, and she was rowed by 100 galley slaves." In later times Don Alvaro da Bazan had one constructed with five rowers in each bench, and was therefore called la quinquereme de Baçan.
  • n9. Everard de la Mark, bishop of Liege.
  • n10. Charles.
  • n11. "Ie luy diz que puisque vostre maieste tenoit la pays dutrecht et de ouvrissel monseigneur de Gheldres nauroit garde regipper, et que pour estre paye de quelques arreraiges monseigneur de Gheldres aura avance les dictes practiques."
  • n12. Charles must by this time have reached Cagliari in Sardinia.
  • n13. At Saragossa, on the 18th of May, the count palatine Frederick married Dorothea, princess of Denmark.
  • n14. "Ie ne sçay si le dict cremuel inuenta cela pour plus priser sa danree, car comme ie luy disoye tout le monde le repputoit la droicte main delle, bien me lon certiffie de bon lieu que la dicte dame ne cessoit nuyt ne iour pour mectre en disgrace du roy le due de norphoc, ne sçay si cest pour ce quil parla tres liberalement delle ou que cremuel vuillant abbaisser les grans vuille commencer par luy."
  • n15. "Il modo di operare questo vostra maesta lo entendera particularmente da questo suo gentilhomo lator delle presente mie lettere, il quale li manda, si come Vostra Altezza li ha fatto entendere che il faccia."
  • n16. Y para procurar todos inconvinientes y estorbar á su dicha magestad.
  • n17. "Si por aventura se venia á entrar en este medio."
  • n18. "Usando en esto de tal y de tan buena y prudente dexteridad, que la cosa no pueda ser tenida á mal, ni quanto á Dios ny quanto al mundo, y que las dichas princessas y los que les tienen buena voluntad entendiessen que esto era por su mayor bien."
  • n19. "que dando él esperança al dicho ambaxador de Inglaterra de buena voluntad por el medio de algunos ministros de Su Magestad, y de haver havido harto buena respuesta desta parte, como el dicho embaxador de Inglaterra ha dicho tenerla de la suya."
  • n20. "Considerando que trayendose la dicha pratica desde Francia, por aventura, como arriba está dicho, seria despues [excus] ada su comision, y tambien se perderia y dilataria el tiempo que es el mayor puncto para estorvar con presteza, como fuesse necessario, la mala intencion del dicho Rey de Francia."
  • n21. "Y por se escusar con su amiga y sus parientes lo querria, y de otra parte que sy el queda endurecido y obstinado seria ocasion de prolongar y empedir el dicho concilio."
  • n22. "Y que tuviese la mano quel dicho concilio se reuna, syn todavia persistir, syno le uviesse, en decir que estava bien inclinado."
  • n23. "Justificando lo que Su Magestad ha hecho y usado hasta agora con él syn le aver dado occasion nenguna de hazer de otra manera."
  • n24. Y por dar estorbo al rey de Inglaterra en su mismo Reyno, y aun por guardar la reputacion y satisfacer y seguir lo que Su Magd ha scripto en Yrlanda á los principales de aquella tierra despachar para ellos, considerando que aquel que havra sido nombrado deve ser alli por todo el mes de Março venidero, y que ya el hibierno esta bien adelante, y no se podra hazer conveniblemente, syno es antes de la partida de Su Magd desta villa.
  • n25. The document has no date, but is placed in Bergenroth's Collection (vol. xviii. p. 161) at the end of 1536. This is, however, a mistake, for Katharine having died in January of that year, the Privy Council could not refer to her and to her treatment as if still alive; besides which, the Emperor had not yet left Madrid for Barcelona,—at any rate not defeated Barbarossa, and taken Tunis. For those reasons I have calendared the paper here.