Spain: October 1538

Pages 48-54

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 6 Part 1, 1538-1542. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1890.

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October 1538, 1-31

2 Oct. 17. The High Commander (Cobos) and Mr. de Granvelle to Luis Sarmiento [de Mendoza], Ambassador in Portugal.
S. E. Port., L. 371,
f. 144.
B. M. Add. 28,590,
f. 248.
Our last letter from Valladolid must have acquainted you with the Emperor's intention of attacking the Grand Turk, &c. [Relates the arrival at court of a gentleman (fn. n1) in waiting to the queen of France, and her proposal of intermarriages, the commission brought by the bishop of Tarbes, &c., almost in the same words as in the letter to Aguilar, and then continues:]
This is in substance what has occurred since the date of our joint letter. (fn. n2) As the Emperor's determination to leave Valladolid was so sudden, we could not write then to inform Your Worship on these particulars. Pray communicate them to the king and queen of Portugal, as well as to the Infante Dom Luyz.
The Emperor left Valladolid on Sunday, the 22nd ulto., for Toledo, to hold there the Cortes convoked for the middle of this month. (fn. n3) We remained behind three or four days to attend to certain pressing business. We will, however, go thither straight, whereas the Emperor will take a circuitous route through the mountains, and will not be there till the xth. The Empress is already at Madrid, and will soon join her husband at Toledo, where they will pass three or four days together.—Cadahalso, 2 October, 1538.
Signed: "Cobos—Perrenot."
Spanish. Original draft. pp. 3.
7 Oct. 18. The Marquis de Aguilar to the Duchess of Florence.
S. E., L. 1,439,
f. 111.
B. M. Add. 28,590,
f. 251.
I have received by Capt. Rodrigo Maldonado Your Excellency's letter, by which, and by another from Lope Hurtado, as well as by what that captain himself has verbally stated to me, I have understood what Your Excellency's answer has been, when asked to sign the powers of attorney for the conclusion and good issue of the negociation carried on with His Holiness. I cannot believe that being, as Your Excellency is, the Emperor's daughter; having always been so obedient to his paternal commands, and knowing also that the present contract has been entered into with his consent and by his express orders; knowing that I myself, trusting in what Your Excellency told me when I was last at Florence, namely, that you were ready to comply with the Emperor's wish in every respect, pledged my word in His Imperial Majesty's name to that effect, you should now, without the least cause or reason for it, propose doing such offence to your own father as not to sign the powers put before you, and this by the advice of those who, no doubt, are more desirous of your ruin than of your's and the Emperor's prosperity. (fn. n4) Indeed, the offence is of such a nature and so great, that were the Emperor to hear of it, Your Excellency's disobedience might be the cause of his casting you away as though you were not his daughter.
As I see no other remedy to this unpleasant state of things than for Your Excellency to grant at once, and before the thing becomes public, the requisite powers of attorney, I now send Obregon, my chamberlain, to place this my letter into Your Excellency's hands, wherever you may be, as well as the enclosed powers for you to sign, so that His Holiness may know that Your Excellency's first answer could not be considered as yours, but dictated by your enemies. The powers to be signed in presence of a notary and witnesses, and my own servant (Obregon) to be despatched forthwith to the Emperor, that he may know whether he has in Your Excellency an obedient or an ungrateful daughter, a rebel to his will.—Rome, 7 October, 1538.
Signed: "Marquis de Aguilar."
Addressed: "To the most illustrious and excellent lady, the duchess of Florence, at the Prato."
10 Oct. 19. Lope Hurtado to the Emperor.
S. E., L. 1,439,
f. 116.
B. M. Add. 28,590,
f. 263.
Wrote by express on the 6th inst. concerning the deed which the marquis de Aguilar wanted the Duchess to sign. After that one of the ambassador's servants (fn. n5) came with a letter, and the draft of the powers. Her Excellency was very much offended at this, and, in my opinion, not without reason, for so intemperate and disrespectful a letter ought never to have been addressed to an obedient and virtuous daughter, such as she is, one who has always obeyed, and will always obey, Your Majesty's commands, especially when I had warned capt. Maldonado, the ambassador's envoy, that this lady ought to be treated gently.
It then seemed to me that the best answer to such an insulting letter would be to take no notice at all of it. I have sent Curbino (fn. n6) to him, and here inclosed is the copy of what he is to say to the Marquis in my name. The messenger is also the bearer of credentials for His Holiness, should the Marquis deem it opportune for him to call at the Quirinal. As to myself, I do not complain of the Marquis' allusions to my humble person, for after all the matter is one of Imperial service.
I thought that the best excuse for the Duchess to make was that on the receipt of the Marquis' letter, she was so angry at it, that she formally declared that she would not grant him, or any other, powers to treat of her marriage, unless the Emperor himself expressly commanded her to do so. As this secret message could not be entrusted to any one, I considered it of lesser importance to prolong the affair and wait for Your Majesty's orders, than to go against the obligations and duties of my charge. (fn. n7)
I entreat Your Majesty to send a gracious answer to the Duchess, and have a letter written to the Marquis, enjoining him to treat her respectfully, as is his duty, and me not so badly as he has done, because if we are to reside at Rome, he must not imagine that he can have there any jurisdiction over us. (fn. n8)
Two days before the Duchess' departure [for Rome] the cardinal (Cibo) and the Duke (Cosmo) came to visit her. They made her all manner of offers, and the Duke appointed one of his own household to see to the quarters of the Duchess as long as she was in Florentine territory. She left on the 8th; will be at Siena (Sena) on the 12th; is in excellent health, and has not the least repugnance to do what Your Majesty wants her to do. Nevertheless, she has resented the Marquis' letter to her more than I can describe.
Your Majesty's letter to Don Juan (fn. n9) and to me shall not remain without an answer. He, as witness of the whole affair, will reply.
The Duke has shown great satisfaction at what Your Majesty has done.—Sanquexan, x. October, 1538.
Signed: "Lope Hurtado."
Addressed: "To the Sacred, Imp. Cath. Maj. of the Emperor and King, our lord."
Spanish. Original, partly ciphered. pp. 2.
10 Oct. 20. Act of Revocation.
S. E., L. 1439,
f. 25.
B. M. Add. 28,590,
f. 255.
The act of revocation by the duchess of Florence of the powers of attorney granted by her to the marquis de Aguilar to treat of her marriage with Octavio Fernes (Ottavio Farnese), His Holiness' grandson. Sent from Toledo, the 10th of October, 1538. (fn. n10)
"I, Margaret of Austria, natural daughter of His most serene, most high, and most powerful lord, Don Carlos, emperor of the Romans, and king of the Spains, &c."
Spanish. Original minuta. pp. 3.
11 Oct. 21. Eustace Chapuys to the Queen of Hungary.
Imp. Arch.
Rep. P. Fasc. 231.
The King, having this morning heard by letters from his ambassadors at Your Majesty's court of the very kind and gracious reception made to them [at Brussels], as well as of the very honest, discreet, and kindly terms in which they were addressed, would have wished, as I am told, to see and thank me for my commendations of secretary Wriste (Wriotsley), his ambassador, and principally to beg me to express to Your Majesty his best and most emphatic thanks for the same, together with the offer of anything within his power or kingdom, had not some light preservative medicine which he took this very morning, besides a bath which he intends to take to-morrow, (fn. n11) prevented his receiving me. Yet, not to delay the departure of this courier, he (the King) has deputed Sir Cromwell to come to me, and be the interpreter of his gratitude to Your Majesty, which that official has done, in such terms, and so affectionately, that I have no words to explain the least part of the King's and his own sentiments towards you. I regret the more not having seen the King, that Sir Cromwell has many a time expressed to me his great desire that his master's and his own gratitude for what has been done should be conveyed to Your Majesty. It now remains for Your Majesty to supply my deficiency, and out of the greatness of Your own mind conceive or devise the best possible commendations, offers, and thanks to be returned to this King and minister.
After explaining his commission, Sir Cromwell said to me that when the King this morning had listened to the letters of his ambassadors, and heard of their kind reception by Your Majesty, as well as the cordial desire manifested by the lords and councillors of those Low Countries—especially Monseigneur the duke of Aarschot, and the counts of Bure (Buren) of Trestein and Molembais—of being useful to him, he (the King) could not help crying for joy, and exclaimed: "I always suspected until now that Her Majesty the queen of Hungary, in her political relations with me, was only seeking her own convenience and profit; but now I see she is really in earnest, and means business. If so, she will find me ready for the game, for to fair play good stakes." (fn. n12)
Cromwell further assured me that he had never before seen in the King, his master, so much disposition for the conclusion of the two marriages, especially that of his daughter, and that he was about to dispatch to that end Dr. Carne, a learned man, to treat conjointly with the other ambassadors of that affair, and had already written to Sir Anthoin Brun (Antony Brown) to come back.
He has also told me confidentially and under secrecy that the King intends sending thither, as soon as possible, a gentleman of his Chamber, but that owing to the importance of the affairs to be discussed and put down in writing, he (Cromwell) did not think that the gentleman's departure could take place till after eight or ten days; he would, however, let me know before the despatch with instructions was closed and sealed, and show me besides many other good provisions, such as the King's offer of assistance and contribution against the Turk, of which he (Cromwell) and the rest of the Privy Councillors had that very morning spoken to the King, reminding him of the many pressing and repeated representations and persuasions I had addressed them on the subject. (fn. n13) "That (added Cromwell) shall not be forgotten, and will form a special article of the ambassador's instructions."
When we came to speak of Papal authority and the Apostolic See, Cromwell declared at last to me that his master, the King, would not insist on it one way or the other, but would be satisfied if no mention at all was made of it. (fn. n14)
Then, upon my remarking that if the King would do the same with respect to Milan—which I thought he ought to do for the reasons lately alleged by me—there would be no difficulty standing in the way of the said marriages, which might thus be concluded within a very short space of time—Cromwell was for a time thoughtful, and in order to avoid giving an opinion on the subject, said that the French were boasting that before three months were over they would be masters of that duchy, and that the whole affair was to be treated and settled at Compiegne. And upon my repeating to him what I, myself, had told the King in Your Majesty's name respecting Your own journey [to France], and the causes of it, and who was the promoter of the interview, and that it was really but an excuse for pastime and pleasure, he (Cromwell) replied that he believed it was so, and yet he avoided, as I say, answering my observation respecting Milan. (fn. n15) Of one thing, however, I am quite certain, namely, that, as far as he himself is concerned, Cromwell is really in earnest in this affair, and that perhaps no one in this world desires more than he does its accomplishment, having already passed many sleepless nights, and met with a thousand reproaches and objurgations on account of it. (fn. n16) —London, 11 October, 1538.
Signed: "Eustace Chapuys."
Addressed: "To Her Majesty the queen of Hungary, Regent in the Low Countries."
French. Original pp. 4.
Oct. 22. The Emperor's Declaration on the League against the Turk, and the Military Preparations to be made by the Confederated Powers.
S. Pat. Ra. Cap.
y Tvat.
con. Port. L. 2.
f. 22.
B. M. Add. 28,590,
f. 243.
The expedition against the Turk to be prepared for the year 1539, and not later than the month of March.
The infantry to consist of 60,000 men at least: namely, Germans, 30,000; Spaniards, 15,000; Italians, 15,000; cavalry of all nations, 5,000 at least.
The German infantry having been divided into three divisions of 10,000 men each, under captains of that nation, called colonels, (fn. n17) namely: 1st, count Fustinberch (Fustenbergh), 2nd, Castelalt, and 3rd, Heychron Rayschak (?), the Signory of Venice may be at liberty to appoint a fourth, provided he be German born, in which case one of the three abovenamed colonels, whomsoever the Emperor designates, will resign his office, unless His Imperial Majesty chooses to appoint another one, who must also be a German. There will then be four colonels in all for the 30,000 infantry. (fn. n18)
The Spaniards to be commanded by the general whom the Emperor may be pleased to appoint.
The Italians to be commanded by captains of His Holiness, and of the Signory of Venice respectively.
The cavalry by captains of the various nations.
Should king Francis, as is confidently expected, join the expedition, and enlist Swiss and cavalry to that effect, their number, whatever it may be, is to be considered as an independent force, exclusive of the 60,000 infantry and 5,000 cavalry belonging to the confederates.
As to the naval forces, considering the number of vessels which the enemy can float, it seems as if 200 galleys at least were required; perhaps 300, counting the transports for the ordnance, ammunition, and provisions. Each party to have ordnance and ammunition in proportion to the number of its men and galleys, and, if necessary, a park of artillery for fighting on land or besieging a town. The artillery to be served by 2,000 gunners; and the horses to be procured from Germany, where they are better and more abundant. Seven thousand pioneers (quastatori) will also be required for the expedition, each power to furnish its contingent according to the number of men it may put on the field.
The expedition to meet at Brindisi or Otranto, as prince Andrea Doria may decide. (fn. n19)
Latin. Contemporary copy. pp. 3.


  • n1. Monsr. de Lordres. See above, pp. 12, 37.
  • n2. No copy of it is in the Bergenroth collection of transcripts from Simancas, now in the British Museum.
  • n3. On the 26th of July 1538 (says Vandenesse), the Emperor came to Valladolid, where the Empress was staying, and remained till the 21st of September, on which day he betook himself to Toledo, and made it his chief residence till the 12th of May 1539, after having in vain assembled the Cortes of Castillo in order to solicit assistance for a war against the Turk. See Itinerary of Charles the Fifth," by Bradford, p. 511. The Cortes above alluded to were those of Toledo, which were dissolved owing to the Count of Coruña, and other Castillian noblemen, as well as the deputies (procuradores) of several towns, having opposed the grant or service demanded for the Turkish war.
  • n4. In Bergenroth's collection of transcripts from Simancas is a protest of Margaret's, dated Florence, the 10th of July 1538, against her proposed marriage to Ottavio Farnese, son of Pier Luigi, and grandson of Alessandro (Pope Paul III.).
  • n5. Obregon, his chamberlain. See above, p. 49.
  • n6. Cherubino. See above, p. 1.
  • n7. "Pareciome que la mejor escusa era decir que de enojada de lo que el Marques le scrivio, dixo no ottorgaria ottro poder sin carta de V. Md pues el secreto de la cosa no era para confiar de nadi. He tenido por menor mal alargar la cosa hasta que V. Md mande lo que se haga que yr contra lo que era obligado."
  • n8. "Suplico á V. Md mande responder á la Sa duquesa graciosamente y escrevir al Marques que trate á Su Exa como debe y á mi no tau mal, porque, si hemos de estar en Roma, no es razon que él piense que tiene jurisdiccion de mandar."
  • n9. That is Don Juan Fernandez Manrique, marquis de Aguilar.
  • n10. There are two copies of this revocation under the same date, but the marriage had been proposed several months before, most likely at Nizza, or at Genoa, when Pope Paul and the Emperor met, for on the 10th of July Margaret entered a protest against it.
  • n11. "Mais pour avoir ce mesme jour le dit sieur roy prinse quelque petite medicine preservative, et ayant demain dentrer au baing."
  • n12. "Ses larmez sortoint dez yeulx de joye, disant que jusques içy yl avoit aucunement suspeçonne que sa maieste le recherchoit pour en faire quelque sien prouffit, mais maintenant yl cognoissoit bien que sa dite maieste alloit rondement en besongne avec luy, et que puisque ainsy estoit yl voulait jouer a bon jeu bon argent."
  • n13. "Et que avant que se serrait (?) la depesche yl me diroit et monstreroit beaucoupt bonnez chosez, et si ne seroit oublie en les instructions larticle touchant la contribution contre le Turcq, du quel encoirez a ce matin luy et ceulx de son couseyl luy avoint tenu propoz, luy ramentonant pluseurs remonstrances et persuasions que sur ce diversez fois leur avoye faittez."
  • n14. "Venant a parler de ce que concerne lauctorite du pape et siege apostolique, yl ma dit a la fin, que le dit sieur roy ne sarresteroit en celle, ne en blanc ne en noir, et se contenteroit quil nen fust faicte mention quelcunque."
  • n15. "Et luy repetissant ce quavoye (ce qu' avois) recite au dit sieur roy de la part de vostre maieste touchant son voyage et de la cause et promotion dicelluy, et quil ne sagissoit que de sentrevoir et faire bonne chiere, yl me dit que ainsy le croyoit; mais avec tout cella yl dissimula de me repondre."
  • n16. "Que quant est en luy, yl ne se faisset poinct aux affaires, et ny a par avanture pas ung autre au monde, que plus en desire lexploit, et en a eu mille reprouchez et maulvaysez nuytz pour sy monstrer trop affectionne."
  • n17. "Quia predicti pedites xxx.m. tres tantum habeant duces, quos colonellos voant."
  • n18. "Et tunc ex his tribus predictis unus cæsabit (cessabit), qui Cæsaræ Maiestati videbitur. Similiter Sanctissimus Dominus Noster, si Sanctitas sua vellit, possit pro sua portione alemanorum unum colonellum ex dicta natione quem vellit nominare & hoc casu erunt quatuor colonelli, aut etiam tres tantum si xv.m. qui erunt proportione Cæse Mtis sua Maiestas vellit unum tantum praesse."
  • n19. The document begins by way of heading with the words "Johan Fernandez Manrichus" and "Marco Antonio Contareno," as if both were attesting the deed—one on the Emperor's side, the other on that of Venice. The former was no other than the marquis de Aguilar, Imperial ambassador in Rome, whose despatches have already been abstracted; Marco Antonio Contareno was Venetian ambassador at Rome. The deed is dated October —, 1538, being only a copy of the draft sent to Rome; but, as will be seen hereafter, the original was not presented until the 3rd of November, when it was signed by the Pope.