Spain: June 1548

Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 9, 1547-1549. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1912.

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'Spain: June 1548', in Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 9, 1547-1549, ed. Martin A S Hume, Royall Tyler( London, 1912), British History Online [accessed 22 July 2024].

'Spain: June 1548', in Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 9, 1547-1549. Edited by Martin A S Hume, Royall Tyler( London, 1912), British History Online, accessed July 22, 2024,

"Spain: June 1548". Calendar of State Papers, Spain, Volume 9, 1547-1549. Ed. Martin A S Hume, Royall Tyler(London, 1912), , British History Online. Web. 22 July 2024.

June 1548

June 8. Vienna Imp. Arch. The Emperor to the King of England.
Very high, very excellent and very puissant Prince, our very dear, well beloved and good brother and cousin, we greet you with all possible affection.
We have learnt from the relation of Your Councillor and Gentleman of the Privy Chamber Master Philip Hoby, (fn. 1) and also from the letters of which he was the bearer addressed to us, that he has been appointed to reside in our Court as your ambassador to us in succession to the bishop of Westminster, who has been recalled in order to be employed in other matters in your service. Although the bishop was very agreeable to us, as having always acted with great modesty and discretion in the discharge of his duty on your behalf, yet we readily conform to your desire to employ him elsewhere, and we extend a hearty welcome to the said Master Philip Hoby. Whenever need arises and he desires it we will have much pleasure in granting him favourable audience, and we will also on every occasion give him such aid and gracious treatment as may be fitting, respecting him in all things as one of our own people.
Augsburg, 8 June, 1548.
June 13. Vienna Imp. Arch. Van der Delft to the Emperor.
A few days ago the Protector communicated to me by a secretary the news they have recently received from Scotland. This is to the effect that Lord Grey, having completed the fortification of Haddington and being desirous of retiring with his force towards Berwick, had considered it necessary to destroy and to lay waste all the country round, and to burn everything that might be of service to the enemy and the French when they should arrive. This course was also deemed advisable, because George Douglas the brother of earl Douglas, having some understanding with the French, to whom he had given one of his sons as a security for his good faith, although not his heir as the French believed, was exhibiting rather more opposition to the English, and was treating the latter more offhandedly than formerly.
Lord Grey therefore thought it would be prudent to anticipate anything he might do, and sent a body of his men to take possession of George Douglas's castle. Douglas then placed himself in an attitude of defence with twenty-five or thirty Scotsmen in the village adjacent to the castle; but perceiving that the force he had would be unable to maintain him against the English he took to flight with one servant, all the rest of his men being killed. The English then at once surrounded the castle, in the belief that George Douglas was still inside, and after considerable difficulty made themselves masters of the castle. They found inside the walls a large number of gentlemen of the lineage of Douglas and George Douglas's wife as well as his heir. They also found there a young noble who will be the successor to one of the principal earls of Scotland. (fn. 2)
There were in the said castle great treasures in money and a large quantity of furniture that the friends of George Douglas and the neighbouring gentlemen had brought thither for greater security. With all these prisoners and a rich booty the English returned to Haddington, and the parties sent out to lay waste the country around also returned thither with great droves of cattle and more than four thousand sheep. Thus, in the neighbourhood of Edinburgh there is not a mill, or even a blade of grass remaining: and although the Regent of Scotland was in Edinburgh with three thousand men, the English encountered no opposition whatever. They say that they have left Haddington so strongly fortified and provided with stores that the aid to be brought by the Frenchmen will be unable to injure them in any way.
These people (the English) were informed yesterday that the French armed expedition for the relief of Scotland was seen between Dover and Calais: but as they report that the Spanish fleet was also mixed up with the squadron of Frenchmen it is not easy to understand what truth there can be in it. The man who first brought the news reported that he had seen more than forty sail anchored between Boulogne and Calais, the wind and tide both being at that time favourable for the voyage towards Scotland. Some people, however, doubted whether this could be the French fleet, or whether the enterprise in hand might not be directed against Boulogne. These people (the English) assert that they have taken fully adequate measures to repel attack at all points; they say that their ships are ready and so completely equipped, that if, peradventure, the French should attempt to invade and occupy any place on the coasts of England or Ireland, they would be able to follow them up immediately.
With regard to religion the rulers here are beginning to prohibit preachers and other people by edict and otherwise from going beyond the ordinances laid down by the King in this respect. The Mass is accordingly still celebrated in the greater number of the churches. The bishop of Winchester has come to court. There was not a single person but believed that he would be taken to the Tower of London a prisoner; but, although he firmly declared that he refused to change his opinion until he was better informed, he was sent back to his own house and came out with a cheerful countenance and followed by a great train. (fn. 3)
Respecting the matter of the Court Master (of the English merchants in Flanders) nothing more has been said about it to me since my last letters, but I am informed that they intend to send very shortly to see the Queen Dowager on the subject a secretary named Dr. Smith who will be accompanied by the Court Master.
London, 13 June, 1548.
15 June. Simancas Estado, 806. Van der Delft to Prince Philip.
As Gonzalo de Hinojosa is leaving here for your Highness's Court about the Renegat business, I cannot omit to give you by him an account of affairs here, believing that Hinojosa will travel thither more rapidly than the letter could reach you otherwise. Your Highness will have learnt that the English have fortified certain strong places in Scotland that their enemies have been unable to capture in spite of all their efforts. The rumour was spread that the King of France intended to send a great fleet to the aid of the Scots, and the English therefore decided to anticipate him and take and fortify an important place near Edinburgh called Haddington, in order to resist and injure their enemies. They effected this and strengthened the place in a manner that they believe will enable them to hold it against any force the enemy can bring against it.
They subsequently captured some other castles, and about ten days ago they took the fortress of George Douglas, the brother of the earl of Douglas (Angus), the first peer in Scotland after the Regent (Arran). They found in the castle a great store of riches and the wife, children and kinsmen of the owner, though he himself escaped attended only by one servant. The English also burnt and destroyed all the country around Edinburgh, and brought into Haddington an enormous quantity of cattle. They met with no resistance whatever, although the Regent was in Edinburgh with three thousand men at arms.
The English general, whose name is Lord Grey, thereupon left an ample supply of stores in Haddington and returned with the greater part of his army to Berwick on the Scottish frontier. The English believe that they have done so much damage in the country that, even if the French force, which has, it is said, already sailed, should arrive they will have much difficulty in maintaining themselves there.
There is up to the present no new appearance of war between France and England, but the English are closely on the watch to see what this fleet is going to do. I will not fail to advise your Highness of what occurs.
The changes in religion here have been very great, so great indeed that in the majority of the churches Mass was not celebrated. But a few days ago the Council issued an order that neither the preachers nor anyone else were to presume to say anything on religious affairs beyond what had been approved of by the King and his Council. The consequence of this is that Mass is again celebrated in all the churches. God grant grace to them for His sake.
London, 15 June, 1548.
21 June. Vienna Imp. Arch. Van der Delft to the Emperor.
After I had received letters from your Majesty's good sister the Queen Dowager, informing me of the answer given to the King of England's ambassador respecting the request that the English should be allowed to raise some foot soldiers and engage the services of Courtpenninck, I went to visit the Protector in order to lay before him the just reasons that had caused this reply to be given. I was well aware that the answer in question would very far from satisfy them, as indeed the Protector informed me at once when he received me, and said that in order not to make any more difficulty about the matter he intended to bring the men by water from the west country. I have written fully to the Queen Dowager of the resentment they displayed at the answer given to their request, and also about the other details that her Majesty instructed me to set forth to the Protector and Council.
The Protector told me that the French had again set to work on the fort near Boulogne which had been knocked down in the time of the late King, and it was difficult for him to know now how he could hinder them. (fn. 4)
He had, he said, no other news, except that a portion of the (French) army had arrived at Leith in Scotland, and that the rest had passed, sailing northward between Ireland and England. He did not know yet with what object they had taken that route. The only information received of the contingent that had arrived in Scotland, was to the effect that eight hundred sail had been counted there. Some of the ships, it appeared, too eager to obtain refreshment early, put into a place held by the English, and the men who landed were chased back into their ships, ten or twelve of them being killed. (fn. 5)
The Protector also told me that it might be presumed that before the French attempted any serious operations against them, they would obtain from the Scots the delivery into their hands of the principal fortresses of the country, which he said would require some time to effect, and perhaps even it might meet with difficulties from the Scots themselves, seeing that the French contingent was not so numerous as had been stipulated by them. The Protector remarked that he was well assured that if the King of France had promised the Scots to contribute to their aid, only a force of ten thousand men they would have answered by asking him what use he thought such a small number as that would be to them. And, yet, according to current rumour, the number of Frenchmen actually sent to Scotland was nothing approaching ten thousand.
These people (the English) have good hopes of being able to hold their fortresses, but, nevertheless, they would be very glad in any case to be able to raise the foot soldiers (i.e., foreign mercenaries) to ensure themselves against any attempt on the part of the French to invade England. In that case your Majesty would be bound by the treaty to furnish them with armed assistance. (fn. 6) They, therefore, say that they ought to encounter the less reluctance in allowing them to obtain men (from the Emperor's dominions) who would be employed at their expense against the common enemy.
In a day or two the Secretary Dr. Smith will leave here to go to the Queen Dowager with the Court master (fn. 7) (of the English merchants in Flanders).
Madam Mary, who remains ever constant and firm in the good and ancient faith, will leave at the end of this month to go to the north country, (fn. 8) where she will remain on the estates of the Duke of Norfolk, who is still a prisoner in the Tower of London.
London, 21 June, 1548.
28 June. Simancas Estado 76. Prince Philip to the Emperor.
Your Majesty's letter of last day of May to hand. Rejoiced to hear of good health, and of the progress of events in Germany, especially that the “Interim” has been published with so many signs of acquiescence and good will on the part of the Princes, especially as there are hopes that the greater part of the cities and towns of Germany will accept it willingly. God grant that it may be so that your Majesty's desires may be fulfilled. The proposal that they should give an aid for the security of Germany would be of such immense importance that I am naturally very anxious to learn what is done in that matter, and what settlement has been arrived at. It also concerns me much to know that you are discussing the suggestion of leaving the territories of Flanders, Brabant and Burgundy under the protection of the empire. I pray your Majesty let me know in due time, as you promise what is decided in this and also about the recess of the Diet. (fn. 9)
I can say nothing more about Roman affairs than to hope that they may progress in a way that will be advantageous to Christendom at large, although I see from what Don Diego de Mendoza writes to me that his Holiness is more concerned in his personal interests than anything else. It depends mainly upon this business how all other things are to be conducted. Your Majesty, who has mastered the whole matter, will, I am sure, direct affairs for the best. I am very grateful to your Majesty for having informed me of the state of affairs that exists between the English and the Scots, and the aid being furnished to the latter by the French. I note also the hopes that exist as to peace negotiations with France; and although they seem to have had small foundation, yet it is a great good at least to have a prospect that no fresh disturbance will take place this year.
There is nothing new about the marriage of Albret's daughter, beyond what I wrote to your Majesty in my last. I will keep you well advised on the point. (fn. 10) What your Majesty wrote to me about the news current there respecting the ships which it was said had sailed for the purpose of plundering and ravaging on the route to the Indies, has also been known here by a letter sent by the members of the India House (Casa de Contratacion) of Seville who had received the news from Lisbon. The Council of the Indies has discussed the matter and has arranged to send out the caravels as had been decided. The Viceroys and the authorities on the coasts have also been instructed to be on the look-out. All other measures that appear necessary shall be taken, as the Council of the Indies will write in detail to your Majesty.
The affairs of the Cortes are in the position that has already been conveyed to your Majesty, and in another letter I will inform you as to what has been concluded. There is very little more to be done, and as soon as I arrive in Valladolid which will be next Monday, please God, the sittings will be brought to an end.
With regard to what your Majesty says about the export of money from this country (Spain), it is quite true that various reports have been received of many frauds being perpetrated in the matter, and steps have been taken to avoid them. But notwithstanding all the efforts we have made we have been unable to repress these evils, as the tricks the people resort to are so numerous, and the places where the leakage occurs are difficult to get at. Nevertheless, in view of what your Majesty now writes, I will order renewed vigilance to be used, and that exemplary punishment shall be inflicted upon those who are discovered to be guilty in this matter. Nothing short of the utmost severity will suffice to suppress this evil, because the gain to those interested is very large. I will inform your Majesty of what is ordered on the subject.
I am very much pleased to learn what your Majesty writes as to the coming hither of Prince Maximilian; and the sooner he arrives the better contented I shall be, seeing the many good reasons there are for his coming and especially to expedite my departure. (fn. 11)
With regard to the person your Majesty proposed to send to Genoa with another power similar to that taken by M. de Chantonnay for M. de Granvelle, to effect the marriage of Prince Maximilian with the Infanta Maria, the matter has been fully discussed here and the opinion is that the step might be avoided if a courier were sent to Genoa with the power of attorney made out in favour of the Ambassador Figueroa, whose qualities are well known to your Majesty, and who will be quite equal to the occasion. A courier would go much more rapidly than any gentleman you could send on such a commission; and to provide for the eventuality of the Prince having already embarked when the courier with the power arrived, you might send another similar power to the Marquis of Aguilar, (fn. 12) and the marriage could then be celebrated as soon as the Prince landed. We have no doubt that your Majesty will approve of this.
I am in daily expectation of receiving a reply to what I wrote to your Majesty by Don Juan de Acuña. The Infanta Maria was slightly indisposed in Madrid and consequently had to be purged and bled, which detained us there for seven or eight days. She is now well, as are also the Infanta Juana and the Infante, who are on their way hither.
Olmedo, 28 June, 1548.


  • 1. The name is spelt indifferently Hoby and Hobby. His house, Bisham Abbey on the Thames near Marlow, stands almost intact with his and many other portraits of his family on the walls.
  • 2. Sir George Douglas was the brother of the Earl of Angus, the head of the Douglas family. He was like most of his kin at the time almost incredibly shifty in his dealings with both sides, as the lands of his house were near the Border and especially open to attack from the English. The castle in question was Dalkeith, captured by Grey on the 3 June as related in the letter. The young noble mentioned appears to have been Lord Methven, of the house of Stuart.
  • 3. Bishop Gardiner was peremptorily summoned to appear before the Council at Whitsuntide, and owing to his indisposition travelled from Winchester in a horse litter. He was received cordially by the Councillors, and minimised the charges against him of Romish practices in defiance of the ordinances. He defended himself vigorously, entirely denying many of the accusations; but when told that he must remain in London for the present he demurred. Somerset insisted, and whilst Gardiner was at Winchester House, Southwark, putting into writing his statement of defence, he was ordered by Somerset to preach before the King, a pitfall intended for his destruction.
  • 4. This was a fort at a place called Marquise somewhere to the north of Boulogne, not to be confused with the fort called Chatillon's Garden to the south of the harbour, which to some extent commanded Lower Boulogne. The fortification at Marquise had for its object the prevention of succour reaching Boulogne from Calais or by sea from Dover. It was the building of this fort that subsequently compelled the English to abandon the place.
  • 5. This incident happened at North Berwick, the French fleet at the time lying off Dunbar. Some sixty men landed at the former place, when Captains Pelham and Aslaby who were stationed in the neighbourhood attacked them, the French leader and ten men were slain in their retreat to the boats.
  • 6. That is to say by the Treaty of Close Alliance of 1543, by which the invasion of the dominions of either party by a third power bound the allies respectively to mutual aid for a limited period and stipulated extent.
  • 7. There is in the Royal Archives at Brussels (Papiers d' Audience, etc., 359) a letter from Edward VI. to the Queen Dowager of Hungary, dated 15 June, 1548, accrediting “Sir Thomas Smith, one of Chief Secretaries, with our servant Thomas Chamberlayne, Governor of our Merchants in Flanders," and begging for them a favourable audience touching the continuation of the good friendship between the writer and the Emperor and his sister the Queen.
  • 8. The writer always thus designates Norfolk, where the estates (Framlingham, etc.) were.
  • 9. Philip at this time was on the eve of his departure to visit Germany and Flanders for the first time, in order, as was hoped, to enable Charles to perfect his great project of securing to his son the succession to the empire as well as to that of the territories of Burgundy. There were many cross-currents flowing, and Philip, under the influence of Alba, was anxious to avoid placing the Flemish States under the empire until his own succession to the latter was secured. See Philip II., by Martin Hume.
  • 10. Jeanne d'Albret, Princess of Navarre, whose marriage with Philip, a young widower, was being advocated by a party in the French Court at the time.
  • 11. Maximilian of Austria, the son of Ferdinand King of the Romans, the Emperor's brother, had been designated Regent of Spain, jointly with the Infanta Maria, to whom he was to be married on his arrival, during the absence of Philip in Germany and Flanders,
  • 12. The Marquis of Aguilar was Viceroy of Catalonia, in which principality Maximilian was to land from Genoa.