Venice: 1461-1470

Pages 92-126

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 1, 1202-1509. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1864.

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1461. Jan. 9. Sforza Archives. Milan. 360. The Bishop of Teramo to Master Lorenzo, of Florence, resident with Queen Margaret.
Manifest perils require my writing, as I am unable to come safely in person to the Queen. In the first place, I require you to declare and offer on your own behalf, that, should it ever be found that I excommunicated any one aiding her Majesty, or following her, I am willing to be flayed or torn asunder; for I excommunicated nobody, cursed nobody, never offended anybody in this kingdom, yet will be ready to do all that and even more if required. What I said and did is contained in my letters published to the clergy and people, of which I sent a copy through you to the Queen, and again inclose the duplicate. They contain my intentions, present and future. They lie who speak otherwise of me. I am ready to stand every possible test. I have heard it is said that those who fell at Northampton could not be buried without my licence. This was not from my fault, but from public opinion, which considered those men excommunicated who refused to listen to a treaty of peace, and thus opposed the Pope's mandates and impugned his authority. I respect her Majesty as much as any man living; she has seen that I did not desert her cause in adversity, and for her I am ready to suffer anything. I write that you may testify to the truth wherever necessary. You know what you told me at the time of the Parliament on behalf of the Queen, what her Majesty wrote with very great passion to me, and what I communicated concerning the mode and conditions of the peace; also that I wished you to wait a few days to enable me to negotiate, as that nobleman of whom you spoke had, amongst all the rest, ever shown himself well disposed to the Queen and in favour of peace: but you could wait no longer. I perceived afterwards the scandals which ensued for want of pacificators, and at present things have come to such a pass that acts of vengeance have been perpetrated on both sides, even beyond what was due; so, as there is now ground for peace, I wish it to be made, and the King desires the same. I therefore notify you, as the trusty confidant of the Queen and those lords that they can have a fair peace if they attend to the legate's counsels, and do not scorn the Pope's authority, as of yore. The conditions will be satisfactory to them if they listen to my advice; and if you come to me in person, as you safely may, I have no doubt but peace will result. You will tell those lords, and especially the Duke of Somerset,—whom I respect for his rare qualities and his love to the Queen and country,—that if they disregard my advice they doom the realm and the Queen's weal to destruction. They ought not to presume upon the trifling victory they obtained owing to the disorderly advance of the others, for I know that the entire population is rabid, and very ill disposed against all who are averse to peace, for two reasons: first, because of the infinite cruelties attributed to them, whereas these (the Yorkists) were not cruel, and took into favour all who would come to them; secondly, because they know that the King and the lords his adherents, including me, are disposed towards a fair and honorable peace, and such as shall be advantageous for both sides. If therefore the cause intrusted to you fail through these lords, they will be in the worst possible plight; they will see in arms for their destruction upwards of 200,000 desperate men, who are constantly mustering and offering to hazard their lives and property in this just cause. I too am bound to sanction anything the King wills by a special mandate I recently received from the Pope. To effect this the Pope has sent me authority to raise and defend the cross after the manner of a true legate de latere; so let it be understood that if they do anything contrary to his will and mandate, they will be accounted criminals and rebels. I am as ready as ever to risk my life and property for the weal and glory of the King and his realm, without any personal reward. I therefore pray them, at the reverence of God, and if they desire the weal of their King and country, not to slight me and my counsels, but respect the authority of the Vicar of Christ and his Legate. Thus they may obtain a fair peace.
But whatever else they disregard, let them give heed to this one fact. Formerly, when I was with these lords, and especially the Earl of Warwick (on account of whose sincere inclination to the King I principally came), God was with them, even though I was not with the King, towards whom I nevertheless was piously disposed. Much more ought they to suppose that God will be on our side, now that I am with the King and intent on his welfare, and now that I have greater power than I then had. I am exerting myself with the King's free will, who is not under restraint, as some falsely allege. He enjoys full liberty, and every person has free access to him, which was notoriously not the case formerly, as I experienced, being neither allowed to approach him, nor yet to deliver or send to him the Pope's or my own letters. They are, in consequence, bound to obey the King, and should give credence to me. The King deprecates battle, murder, and rapine, and all ills proceeding thence, and by his will the Legate offers them peace. Let them be well disposed and obedient, and they shall have a fair peace, which I offer by the will of his Majesty. I see no other remedy, and pray them to avert their ruin. I desire their welfare, and repeat that I have put myself forward for the common weal without any personal advantage. I have hitherto, as they know, exercised my office without slur; I have suffered and toiled solely for the public good, and have exposed myself to great perils when I might have been living in quiet out of the kingdom. If they scorn the peace they formerly upheld as fair, they will fall under the displeasure of God. London, 9 Jan., 1461.
Signed: “F. Episcopus Interammensis Apostolicæ Sedis Legatus.”
[Copy. Latin, 315 lines.]
P.S. Lorenzo! tell those lords not to despise my letters, for they are of other substance than has been supposed hitherto. If any one should be dissatisfied, say I think it better to make peace as victor than as vanquished. This was what the sage and prudent Romans used to do. They must consider how much they have to accomplish before they can conquer, and who their opponents are. The King, from his experience of my Lord of Warwick and his adherents, is determined to defend them to the death, as he never had more faithful subjects. The whole of the people is similarly disposed. I assure you the means of peace are such that, could I but speak with them in safety, they would approve them. I cannot put them in writing, but could have shown them to you if you had come. I pray you to contrive that my letters be listened to and understood.
[Copy. Italian, 48 lines.]
Jan. 9. Sforza Archives, Milan. 361. [The Bishop of Teramo] to—. (fn. 1)
I trust all will be remedied, though the perils are great, the Earl of Warwick being here with the King, who, together with the neighbouring population, is well disposed towards my intention. I have recommended them, in the meanwhile, not to give battle to desperate enemies, who are, moreover, strong in consequence of this victory, but to remain on the defensive till Easter. During the interval I am, with the consent of the majority, negotiating an agreement by fair means; and my reputation must receive succour from Rome, my legation and Warwick requiring nothing else. For its attainment letters and commissions have been drawn up here in conformity with my wishes, as you will learn from Dom. Antonio [della Torre]. I shall have effected wonders if the affair succeed. A large army is now being formed, and after dispatching these matters, which will occupy but a few days, the King will advance, being guided by one who has the wish—the victory being recent, although he did not indicate this openly to me: it will suffice for the accomplishment of our affair. London, 9 Jan., 1461.
Not signed. No address.
[Copy. Italian, 32 lines.]
Jan. 9. Sforza Archives, Milan. 362. Antonio della Torre to Francesco Sforza Duke of Milan.
Many days ago I was dispatched on my way back, with every commission fitting and favourable for public and private affairs, being charged to make every demand by word of mouth. When I arrive at Milan you will perceive that here they do not slumber over the affairs of the Church or of your Excellency, nor yet over those of all Italy. When I was on the eve of departure some very important events occurred, to see whose result I tarry a few days.
Some of those lords, the Queen's adherents, were made desperate by the victory obtained by these lords (the Yorkists), and especially by the Earl of Warwick,; so they assembled a force in the north, some 80 miles from London, for the purpose of coming to attack these their adversaries, who are with the King, and of getting him into their possession again. The Duke of York, with his two sons and the Earl of Salisbury, Warwick's father, marched to meet them; their forces were the strongest by three to one, but were mismanaged, a great part of the host being indiscreetly allowed to go on pillaging and foraging expeditions. Their opponents, who are desperate, attacked and routed them, killing the Duke, his younger son, the Earl of Rutland, Warwick's father, and many others. The news of the defeat struck great terror into this side, though Warwick was not at the battle. Owing to his singular valour and his popularity, and as the King keeps him all to himself, he is engaged in making preparations with very great encouragement. The cause of the catastrophe is the small account in which the Legate's doings have hitherto been held at Rome. The other party has circulated reports that he was not Legate, and that the Pope had recalled him because he was dissatisfied with his proceedings. Nevertheless the whole of the people hereabouts, who love the King and Warwick and are mindful of the advantage which the Legate's presence afforded them on the last occasion, take courage and muster willingly on hearing that he is on the spot. It is hoped that within a month or two there will be upwards of 150,000 men in the field. The belief is that, if peace do not ensue, the ruin in this kingdom will be greater than has been witnessed for the last thousand years. Should the Legate escape, he may, perhaps, put himself again in the midst of this turmoil, though he has no cause to do so unless he be held in greater respect by the Roman court, which—I crave pardon for saying so—does not appear to know him so well as your Lordship does. During this interval the Legate has written a letter to the opposite party, of which I send a copy. It is addressed to an Italian friar, the Legate's intimate dependent, who is there. Had the Church of Rome shown that it held these English affairs in greater account than it has done, repute would have maintained and augmented the first victory, which is now, as it were, lost and confused. I shall set out as soon as possible; and it is needful that in the meantime you should urge the [Romish] court to make some further demonstration here speedily. Projects honorable and favorable for the state of the Church, and to the intent of the Pope and of Italy, have been again arranged, and are such as have never been witnessed in our days. But as the Legate is a poor bishop, the prelates at Rome consider the great things he effects here as dreams, though experience has shown them so much that it ought to suffice for their belief. Possibly the bane is envy, as I became partly aware when over there. London, 9 Jan.
P.S. This engagement took place on the 30th of December, near Pontefract Castle.
Signed: “Your said most illustrious Lordship's most devoted servant, [and] of the Household of his Royal Majesty, Antonius de Turri, manu propria.”
[Copy. Italian, 3½ pages.]
Jan. 11. Sforza Archives, Milan. 363. Richard Nevill Earl of Warwick to Pope Pius II.
Your Holiness must not be troubled if you have heard of the events in England, and of the destruction of some of my kinsmen in the battle against our enemies. With the assistance of God and of the King, who is excellently disposed, all will end well. We shall obtain either a fair and sure peace or victory, especially if you confer the long-expected promotion on your Legate. The people will then see that our adversaries, who daily spread lying reports, are false and not true men; for they scorn your authority and the Legate's, and say the latter has no power and is no legate, adding marvellous falsehoods to make him unpopular, to the detriment of the Church and the King. If, according to your former letters, you value my allegiance and the allegiance of those who are conscientiously aiding the King and the Legate (in conformity with the statement of Dom. Antonio della Torre, his Majesty's ambassador), it will be necessary so to deal with us and the Legate that all may know such to be the fact, and that he may bear the [legantine] cross which you sent him, without envy and opposition on account of our two Archbishops and Primates, as Dom. Antonio, the bearer, can inform you. Be pleased to give him full credence, and do not desert me and the others whom you formerly received as sons, for eventually you will see us end well and devoutly. The King sends his recommendations and desires certain concessions, which Antonio will declare. London, 11 Jan. 1461.
Signed: “Your said Holiness's most devoted son and subject, R. Earl of Warwick.”
[Copy. Latin, 58 lines.]
1461. Jan. 11. Sforza Archives, Milan. 364. Richard Nevill, Earl of Warwick, to Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan.
Probably you have already heard from the Legate certain news from these parts with regret, from the good will you bear us all and our state. You may notwithstanding be of good cheer, for we hope doubtless to remedy everything, especially if the Legate be promoted by the Pope, as we trust. This would confound the malice of our enemies, who from lack of other means circulate among the people a thousand rogueries and lies against the authority of the Pope and Legate. On this and other business we are again sending Dom. Antonio della Torre to the Pope and to you, and beg credence for him. The promotion of the Legate is indispensable, if the Pope mean to aid the state of the Church and our just cause. We are devoted to the Pope and to the commonweal of his Majesty and the realm, which our adversaries endeavour to destroy. They will be prevented doing so if the expected favour be granted by the Pope. London, 11 Jan. 1461.
Signed: “Your Excellency's son and kinsman, Richard Nevill, Earl of Warwick.”
[Copy. Latin, 40 lines.]
Jan. 28. Sforza Archives, Milan. 365. The Bishop of Teramo to [Checco di Calabria?] a Minister of the Duke of Milan.
You will receive information from the inclosure I sent to the Duke. Master Antonio della Torre departed hence on the 16th, and crossed the sea on his way over there with very copious letters and in excellent form. I trust the present messenger will arrive right speedily. Acquaint the Duke with everything and recommend me to him. I find myself in these straits solely for the sake of doing good. London, 28 Jan. 1461.
Signed: “Your Brother, Bishop of Teramo, Legate of the Apostolic See, manu propria.”
Not addressed.
[Copy. Italian, ½ page.]
Feb. 14. Senato Mar. v. vi. p. 213. 366. Doge Pasqual Malipiero to the Captain of the Flanders Galleys.
By letters and other statements has heard of the discord and war in England. Having regard for the safety of the merchants of the galleys, and of the property of his subjects thereabouts, and the period assigned for his stay in Antwerp having expired, has determined to command him to depart thence with the galleys for Hampton with as much speed and safety as possible. During his stay at that place he is not to go ashore, and to give permission to land to as few as possible. He is also to hasten his return from Hampton.
Ayes, 142. Noes, 0. Neutrals, 0
[Italian, 13 lines.]
1461. Feb. 20. Sforza Archives, Milan. 367. The Bishop of Teramo to Master Richard Cañten.
Has arrived safely in Holland after many perils, having been accompanied by Master Richard and others appointed by the Yorkist lords to Gravesend on Friday 10th Feb. 1461. After their departure he went on board ship at the town of Tilbury, and reached the mouth of the Thames with a fair wind, but the vessel being a large one, ran risk of being stranded there. On the morrow, when out of sight of land, the ship struck on a sand bank and was expected to go to pieces. Shortly after the vessel floated with the flood tide, but was next pursued by a Frenchman; then came a violent storm. At length the Legate landed safely at the Brill, a village belonging to the Count of Hostervant, an infirm old man who can no longer walk The Count, with incredible courtesy, made him presents and took him to his own dwelling. On the morrow (for the Legate had come by night) he had him attended in solemn procession from his lodging to the church. He banqueted him and his household daily, the table being served so sumptuously “that not even in England would more have been possible,” such was the plenty of the choicest fish, wines, and other luxuries. Performed the vows he made at sea. Awaits the result of affairs in England, and has prayers offered up for their prosperity. Should nothing occur in the meanwhile, purposes quitting the Brill for Middleburgh and Calais on Monday, 23rd Feb. Commends himself and his followers to the King and the Lords of the Council. The Brill, 20 Feb. 1461.
P.S. Is sending to him the bulls he requested for his friends, with one for Master Thomas, chaplain of the Lord Chancellor, another for an esquire in the service of the Bishop of Salisbury, and a third for Thomas Gray, of the Legate's own retinue. Charges him to exhort Gray to attend to the Legate's affairs, and say that had he, as in duty bound, come to him on his departure, the Legate would have given him something he would have been glad of.
Signed: “F. Interamnensis Apostolicæ Sedis Legatus.”
Addressed: “The Worshipful and most Excellent Master Richard Cañten, clerk of the Apostolic Chamber, and Chancellor (Cañce:? canon) of St. David's.”
[Copy. Latin, 200 lines.]
March 14. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 5. 368. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders voyage.
[Latin, 274 lines.]
March 18. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 3. 369. Decree of the Senate.
In the olden time the consuls in Bruges and London used every month to send a bag with the letters of the merchants. Two bags were received, two thirds of their cost being paid by the merchants of Bruges and one third by the London merchants. Now, on the contrary, scarcely one bag is received, for two months have elapsed without the receipt of any letters or advices from those parts. It is therefore put to the ballot, that the consul at Bruges be desired to keep two bags, sending one of them to Venice every month; and that half the expenses be paid by the merchants of Bruges and the other half by the merchants of London. Notice of this resolve to be given to the consul in London that he may have an understanding on this subject with the consul at Bruges.
Ayes, 113. Noes, 1. Neutrals, 1.
[Latin, 9 lines.]
April 7. Sforza Archives, Milan. 370. George Nevill, Bishop of Exeter, Chancellor of England, to Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo, in Flanders.
As something new has occurred here since your departure, I will write briefly about these events, as learnt by letters, from the lips of messengers, or from common report; although they are much incumbered and perplexed with many important matters.
On the 13th kalends of March (17th February) we fought unsuccessfully near St. Alban's, the details of which action would be too long to narrate, but I think it right to give a summary of the battle. Lord Berners (John Bourchier), brother of the Archbishop of Canterbury (Thomas Bourchier), with my brother Lord Montagu (John Nevill) and Sir Thomas Charleton, Knight, were captured and taken as far as York. Lord de Bonneville and Sir Thomas Kiryel were taken and beheaded, and many of inferior station on our side were destroyed. The loss on both sides amounts to well nigh 3,000 men. We however fled, and lost that puppet of a King—fortunate assuredly in this disaster; whereupon the puppet was carried off northwards and the country ravaged; at length the woman with her consort got to York, big everywhere of their not bloodless and unquestionable victory. Meanwhile Prince Edward, then commonly called Earl of March, was leading an army of 30,000 men towards London, where he made his entry with my brother the Earl of Warwick (who had escaped to him from the former battle) on the 3rd kalends of March (27th February). He was received joyfully by the entire population, and at Westminster on the fourth of the nones of the month (4th March), at the demand, nay, by compulsion of well nigh all present, both Lords and Commons, he was appointed King; the ceremony of his coronation, for important reasons, being alone deferred. (fn. 2) Thereupon, on the third of the ides of the month (13th March), he proceeded northwards with a numerous army, having a week previously dispatched my said brother westward to muster forces. The King and the brave Duke of Norfolk, with my brother, and my uncle Lord de Fauconbridge, took different roads, and at length joined forces near York. There, having recruited and marshalled their brigades, they forthwith marched towards the enemy, and at daybreak on Palm Sunday, not far from York, namely at Ferrybridge, a town 16 miles from that city, the attack commenced. The enemy had broken the ferry-bridge, and, occupying the narrow raft which our people had made after its destruction by handicraft, they stoutly disputed its passage, but we carried it sword in hand. Very many were killed on both sides, but at length the enemy showed their backs and many fell in the flight. That day's battle was a great one; for it commenced about sunrise and lasted till about ten o'clock at night, such was the obstinacy and boldness of mortal men on the verge of a wretched death. At the town of Tadcaster, eight miles from York, very many of the fugitives were drowned in the river, the enemy having themselves broken the bridge in their rear beforehand. Of the remainder who escaped for the moment a great part were killed in that town, and in the city [of York]; and quite lately one might have still seen the bodies of these unfortunate men lying unburied, over a space nearly six miles in length and three or four furlongs broad. I understand that eleven lords of the enemy's party perished, including the Earls of Devon and Northumberland, Lords de Clifford and Nevill, together with sundry knights; and according to the report of those acquainted with the particulars, the loss on both sides amounted to well nigh 28,000 men. Oh luckless race!
“. . . . . . . . . . populumque potentem In sua victrici conversum viscera dextra—” (fn. 3)
to use the words of Lucan—a mighty people turning their victorious weapons against their entrails. Alas! we are a race deserving of pity even from the French, if indeed their breasts contain the smallest spark of pity for the blood of our people, who for civil and intestine war have thus set that hand which, if directed by a fitting leader against the perfidious enemies of Christendom, might possibly not a little have crippled their forces. But it is just that we—who, when so strongly urged by you and others to aid the army of the Pope against the foes of Christ, would neither contribute men nor money—should diminish our own wealth and shed our own blood in torrents for the sake of civil strife. But returning to the subject, the above mentioned puppet and Margaret herself, with her son, the Duke of Somerset and a few others, escaped to Newcastle, sixty miles north of York; though two letters have been forwarded hither, stating that the fugitives have been captured by certain knights, our adherents in that district. I cannot, however, venture to assert anything in this matter; but I fancy they will not easily get away.
I prefer you should learn from others than myself how manfully our King, the Duke of Norfolk, and my brother and uncle bore themselves in this battle; first lighting like common soldiers, then commanding, encouraging, and rallying their squadrons like the greatest captains.
After this, on the morrow, the eve of the kalends of April, our King with his army entered York peaceably, my brother, Lord Montagu, and Lord Berners, who had been left in the city when the enemy fled, having on that same day come to ask pardon for the citizens. I believe the King will remain there some time, to reorganise matters in those parts; whither I have bean quite lately commanded by his Majesty to betake myself.
I now hope that such storms will be succeeded by halcyon days, that a calmer breeze may rejoice us after such cloudy skies, and that we may at length reach the desired haven after so many wrecks. I will send news of further events, and hope you may return to England.
London, 7th ides of April (7 April).
Signed: “George of Exeter.”
Addressed: “To the most Reverend,” etc. “the Lord Francesco, by the grace of God Bishop of Teramo, our most holy Lord's Legate in England.”
[Copy. Latin, 8 pages.]
April 7. Sforza Archives, Milan. 371. Richard Beauchamp, Bishop of Salisbury, to Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo.
We received in London, on 2nd April, your letters dispatched from Bruges on the 20th March. Fortune has favoured us since you, before the commencement of our worst disasters, quitted this luckless land.
After the disastrous battle of St. Alban's the late King fell into the hands of the aggressors, very many of his [partisans] being killed. This convulsed the whole kingdom; for myself, indeed, as one out of many thousands, no place seemed safe; a general dread prevailed of the destruction of cities, of rapine without respect for persons, sex, or sanctuaries; and lastly, which is yet more terrible, there was scarcely any one who did not fear that his own head was threatened. Many of the nobles who, in these straits, sought to consult their safety by flight, were prevented by the plots of the commons, who possibly expected to be able to procure peace for themselves with the heads of such great men. Of those however who, keeping their own secret, escaped by stealth, some of our own party, as we learnt quite recently, have most unfortunately fallen into the hands of the enemy or of pirates, together with much of the kingdom's treasure.
I therefore congratulate you on your escape from these perils in our land, from perils at sea, and from the perils of false brethren to a place of refuge. We on the other hand were harassed by the dread of utter destruction until the northern men with their captive King, and laden with much booty, returned straggling northwards, having possibly heard [of the approach] of Edward, then Duke of York, who was not present at that unfortunate engagement. Our people therefore, perceiving the downfal, not merely of things in general, but of themselves individually—impending ruin most cruelly devised by man—and that the treaty, peace, and compromise made by the late parliament was not observed by the opposite party,—on the coming shortly after of the Duke to the city of London, with a stately retinue, the citizens unanimously and marvellously applauded his title to the crown, raising him to the throne as the sole and true heir of the realm, and acknowledging him as their liege lord; which ceremony of the new King's coronation was performed . . . . . . . . . . on 4th March.
Thereupon, a countless multitude flocking to him in increasing numbers daily, our most glorious King Edward set out on the 13th day of the said month from London towards the north to confound his enemies there. Amongst his adherents who accompanied or preceded him were the Duke of Norfolk, the Earl of Warwick, Lord de Fauconbridge, Lord John Stanley, Lord Fitzwalter, the only one, we hear, of the lords on this side who was killed; and before the battle the King's army increased to well nigh 200,000 men.
At present marvellous is the joy at this event of all the cities and places of the realm; and indeed yet more wonderful is it, in such wise as to appear to many almost incredible, that even on the sterile soil of our country, owing to the purchases made of provisions, such a multitude should experience no scarcity.
We therefore hope that God, who has hitherto allowed a sinful race to be sorely smitten under an unfortunate sovereign, being now anpeased by tears and prayers, has at length sent us this saviour, in whose sight, indeed, I myself have found such grace and favour that he has selected me to be chief of the three persons to whom all the most secret matters of his Council are referred. From the King, his predecessor, under whom I grew up almost from the cradle, I could not presume on such favour. You have in me a trusty advocate. As yet we approve your determination to await the stable result of this important business. We will give you the news of current events, the most important of which is that on Palm Sunday last King Edward commenced a very hard-fought battle with the enemy near York, the result remaining doubtful during the whole of the day, till at length victory declared itself on his side, at a moment when those present affirm that almost all of our followers despaired of it, so great was the power and impetus of the enemy, had not the Prince single-handed put himself forward so notably as he did, with the utmost of human courage.
There consequently perished an amount of men nearly . . . . . . . . . . hitherto unheard of in our country, and estimated by the heralds at 28,000, besides the wounded and those who were drowned. Amongst the dead were ten lords of note and great power, and the few who got away in small number are, we hope, taken, or so surrounded as to be unable to attempt escape. These [fugitives] are the Dukes of Somerset and Exeter and Lord de Roos, with their and our former King Henry, Prince, and Queen. The entire realm now acknowledges one sovereign, and the power of others has utterly vanished.
London, 7th ides of April 1461.
[P.S.] Concerning our summons to the Roman court, as our service is acceptable to the King, we beseech you to write back that we are relieved from that burthen for the present. We trust shortly to make a journey beyond sea, perhaps even to the Roman court, for honourable causes.
Signed: “R. Beauchamp, Bishop of Salisbury.”
Addressed: “To the Right Rev., &c., The Lord F., by the grace of God Bishop of Teramo and Legate from the Apostolic See, now sojourning at Bruges.”
[Copy. Latin, 6 pages.]
1461. April 8. Sforza Archives Milan. 372. Nicholas O'Flanagan, (fn. 4) Bishop of Elphin, to the Bishop of Teramo, Papal Legate.
I had a prosperous journey hitherward when I came from you, and am now in London in good bodily health. I should have written by Master Antonio, but he quitted London by stealth, after robbing me of 10l. sterling. I pray you find some means for the recovery of the money.
King Edward IV. gained a victory over his enemies on Palm Sunday. The list of those who were killed is overleaf, namely, the Earls of Northumberland and Devon, the Lords de Clifford, de Beaumont, Dacre, de Willoughby, de Welles and de Scales, Anthony de Ryvere Lord Maley (Mauley), Rafe Bygot Lord Nevill, Lord Henry, son of the Duke of Buckingham, Sir Rafe Percy, Sir Thomas Bellingham, Sir Andrew Trolopp, Sir William Bastard of Exeter, &c. The number of commoners killed on the other side was 28,000, while on King Edward's side only one lord was killed, Lord Fitzwalter, and 800 men of the commons. The late King and Queen and the Prince, with the Dukes of Somerset and Exeter, took flight, and King Edward was received into the city of York with honour and great dread. He sent a great number of men-at-arms in pursuit of the fugitives, so that not one may escape when taken. All this is indubitably true, and on account [thereof] there was a great ceremony in London on Holy Saturday of Easter, when “Te Deum” was sung and the Lord Chancellor in person proclaimed these facts at St. Paul's Cross. The King sent for the Chancellor [to go] to York.
On Easter Monday, at the vesper hour, I was in the house of the Duchess of York. Immediately after vespers the Lord Treasurer came to her with an authentic letter, stating that the late King with his kindred and the personages above mentioned had been all captured and brought to King Edward. On hearing this news the Duchess [returned] to the chapel with two chaplains and myself and there we said “Te Deum;” after which I told her that the time was come for writing to your Lordship, of which she approved. I come to the conclusion that everything is proceeding prosperously for King Edward: at present all England rejoices vastly, and reverences him alone as King and Lord.
As touching Master John de Aleyn, I sent to him at Oxford, and was answered that he is confined in Warwick Castle, because he chose to go to the Queen. Concerning . . . . . . . . . . Bishop of . . . . . . . . . . heard since I quitted you. I have been unable to send you anything certain; but I now perceive, from the language of the Lord of Salisbury, that the English will not have any one from your country to fill any charge amongst them, unless it be yourself. I published the jubilee to them, whereon they all congratulate themselves, and should you wish me to work upon these lords, I will spare no pains to do what is possible and useful. Sir Richard Chancellor (Dominus Ricardus Cancell~) (fn. 5) and certain other gentlemen have not yet received the letters left by you Antwerp; they had heard nothing about you till I went to them. As soon as you can, write to the King, the Chancellor, and other Lords, as I see they wish it; also to the Duchess, who is very partial to you, and [holds] the King at her pleasure. She will not fail you in anything you ask, as long as I have any power. London, on the third holiday of Easter week, 1461.
Signed: “N. Bishop of Elphin.”
Addressed: “The Lord F. Bishop of Teramo, Legate of the Apostolic See in England, Scotland and Ireland; for delivery at Bruges.”
[Copy. Latin, 4½ pages.]
ii. List of the lords who fell on the side of the northern men in the battle near York:—
Earls of Northumberland.
of Devon.
Barons Lord de Clifford.
” John Beaumont.
” Welles.
” Nevill.
” Dacres.
Anthony, son of Lord le Ryvers, lately made Lord “le Scales.”
Ralph Bygot, commonly called Lord “le Malley” (de Mauley).
Henry, son of the Duke of Buckingham.
Knights Sir Henry Belingham.
” Ralph Grey.
— Andrew Trollopp.
“The number of men that fell on the field, besides the wounded and drowned, 28,000. And on the side of our Edward the only lord who fell was Lord John Fitzwalter.”
April 11. Sforza Archives, Milan. 373. Nicholas O'Flanagan, Bishop of Elphin, to the Bishop of Teramo, Papal Legate.
What I wrote in my former letter concerning King Edward's good fortune has been confirmed, as will probably have been notified to you by the Lord Chancellor and the Bishop of Salisbury. It is reported among the English lords that the Duke of Burgundy is treating the King's brothers with respect. This pleases them wonderfully, and they believe there will be a great friendship between the Duke and the English by means of an indissoluble treaty, and that one of the King's brothers will marry the daughter of Charolois (filiam Charles). I understand, from what the Bishop of Salisbury says, that he wishes you to prevail on the Duke and his Council to write to himself individually, as the King's privy councillor, respecting what should be done between them; and he would have you work diligently and efficiently. I heard this moment of the Bishop of Meath; but Master John Alleyn is still in Warwick Castle. Do not delay writing to those lords by the bearer. London, on the sixth holiday in Easter week, 1461.
Signed: “N. Bishop of Elphin.”
Addressed: “To the most Reverend Lord F., by the grace of God, Bishop of Teramo and Legate of the Apostolic See; for delivery at Bruges.”
Endorsed: “Copy of letters from London, sent to Master Falcone at Rome.”
[Copy. Latin, 1¼ pages.]
April 14. Sforza Archives, Milan. 374. to Pigello Portinaro, [resident at Bruges]. (fn. 6)
The two camps of King Henry and of the new King Edward met near York, about 170 miles hence, and fought a very great battle, which lasted a whole day and a half. At length fortune gave the victory to King Edward: he has, as one may say, annihilated the enemy, amongst whose killed there are reported to be the Earls of Northumberland and Devonshire, Lords de Clifford, de Nevill, de Beaumont, and. Welles, Henry of Buckingham, Anthony de Rivers, Lord Scales, Lord de Willoughby (Duelebi); and many knights and gentlemen fell, with a good 20,000 persons. On this other side, it is said, Lord de Serup (John le Scrope?) and Lord de Finath (Fitzwalter?) were killed, with about 8,000 knights and other persons. King Henry, the Queen, and the Prince are said to have fled to Newcastle, 60 miles from York, accompanied by the Dukes of Exeter and Somerset, and by Lords de Ros and de Rivers. King Edward sent 20,000 men to capture them, and it is said the town is already besieged. If they be found there no doubt is entertained by this party of having them at home; but that is quite uncertain, as the town is near the sea. It is supposed that, having found means to embark, they have gone to Scotland or France; in which case they have decided wisely. That party is well nigh destroyed, and King Edward has become master and governor of the whole realm. I am unable to declare how well the commons love and adore him, as if he were their God. The entire kingdom keeps holiday for the event, which seems a boon from above. Thus far he appears to be a just prince, and to mean to amend and organize matters otherwise than has been done hitherto; so all comfort themselves with hopes of future well being. I will acquaint you with any further news. What I have mentioned is the conclusion of all that has occurred down to this day.
[Copy. Italian, 2 pages. The above is taken from a paragraph in a letter, dated London, 14th April 1461.]
1461. April 17. Sforza Archives, Milan. 375. To the Legate, Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo, from his physician Master Anthony.
I wrote to your lordship on Monday last the news I found at Bruges concerning the affairs of England. The intelligence is true, and is confirmed hourly, letters having been received to this effect. I have had letters from friends in London, stating the battle commenced on Palm Sunday, at the hour of prime, at Pontefract, and lasted until Tuesday at noon. Between Pontefract and York 30,000 men were killed, King Henry, the Queen, and the Prince being captured; and all the northern Lords (Domini de Boria) are dead, Northumberland and Westmoreland, Clifford, Henry of Buckingham, the Earl of Devonshire, Lord de Ros (Thomas de Eos), Dacre (Ranulph Dacre), Beaumont (William de Beaumont) Lord de Scales (Anthony Widvile), Lord Welles, Huebbi (Willoughby?), Lord Morley; Knights—Harry Bellingham, Andrew Trolop, Ralph Gray, Ralph Percy the bastard, the Duke of Heccestre (sic), and the Earl of Wiltshire. Subsequently the King (Edward IV.) assembled all the prelates of the kingdom to decide what should be done with King Henry, the Queen, and the Prince, and with the Duke of Exeter.
These things are true, and you must consider whether you will change your mind about writing; or whether you wish me to go to England with such information and letters as I have already received from you. I think you ought to write to some persons congratulaing them on the victory. Let me know what I am to do with the King and the Lords, your friends and well wishers. You must also write to the Duchess of York, and to Nectuñen (Warwick?), as he is good. At this commencement one might perhaps do some good. Send me money for my journey, and to enable me to remain to transact your business. You gave orders for me to receive two nobles; three ducats and a quarter were given me, nor did I discover this until-, as Thomas knows. They ask a noble for a safeconduct, so I did as your lordship enjoined me. Let me have your orders as to my going with your first letters; or whether you choose to write fresh ones on account of the victory.
The brothers of King Edward are here at Sluys, and tomorrow or Saturday afternoon are to come hither. I have been asked by the English to accompany them as a mark of respect towards these Princes. I shall do so, and offer my services in your name. Concerning what I have done here about the commissions given by your lordship to Thomas, I am certain that he alone and no one else knows that.
Bruges, 17 April, 1461.
Signed: “Antonius.”
Inscribed: “Iste est medicus Dñi Legati qui scribit.”
[Copy. Italian, 3½ pages.]
April 23. Sforza Archives, Milan. 376. Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo, to George Nevill, Bishop of Exeter, Lord Chancellor of England.
By this messenger, who is returning, we received your letters. We read in succession the catastrophes and dangers which, after our departure, have visited and desolated that realm; last of all that glorious victory which the Lord hath vouchsafed to the noble Edward and the devoted sons of the Church. We remember your vow to serve God and the Pope, and your suggestion to the then Earl of March that he should be alive and doing. Those who threatened to hang us have now wretchedly ended their lives; and it belongs to you to exhort the King (as we do by a letter which we are sending to him) that, as his election and appointment were wonderful, so should he acknowledge the grace from its Author and Lord, rendering due honour to Him who says, “Through me kings do reign.” Let him keep his promises to him who rendered himself obnoxious that he might reign. His enemies fell thus marvellously for having stubbornly scorned the Apostolic authority.
What great confusion we were all in! how intense our terror! what gross abuse and insult were heaped on us by the mob when at the last engagement, fatal to your party, we quitted him! At present how great the change! Will communicate more fully when in the King's presence, which will soon be the case. We have transmitted your letter to the Pope, to acquaint him with the truth and with your pious disposition, which will doubtless be to the increase of your estate and glory. Be pleased to recommend us to the King, to whom we have written a few lines, to your brother the Earl (Warwick), to your uncle (Lord de Fauconbridge), and to the rest of your noble house, especially to Lord Montagu, whom we congratulate on having with so much glory escaped twice from the enemy. We are sure to gain the day in their company and in that of the other prelates and lords, (fn. 7) so that they may comprehend that they have accepted a son or brother, of one mind with them; (fn. 8) and this the more especially as they also chose to receive us in their own ranks. (fn. 9)
We inclose letters from Master Antonio della Torre, the envoy from the King and your party, in date of Milan, showing how high your brother's name stands in Italy. That letter should be sent him with the one we are writing to him; and on our return we will acquaint him with matters relating to his and your estate, which came to our knowledge here. Mechlin, 23 April 1461.
Signed: “F. Bishop of Teramo, Legate of the Apostolic see.”
P.S. Give credence to Friar Maurice, the bearer, who will supply the deficiencies of this letter.
Addressed: “To the most Reverend Lord Bishop of Exeter, Chancellor of England.”
[Copy. Latin, 6 pages.]
April 27. Sforza Archives, Milan. 377. Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo, to Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan.
I sent letters a few days ago by a footman of my own, who was to reach Milan in 12 or 14 days. I now send the copy of letters received from England, and above all from the Chancellor, the Earl of Warwick's brother, and from two other bishops, whereby you will learn the victory gained by the Earl of March, who is made new King, and Warwick, and how destructive the battle was. The loss on both sides amounted to 28,000 men, including 10 of the greatest Lancastrian lords, whilst of this amount only one baron and 800 others were killed on our King's side. Matters tend towards reform, nor was there ever a more auspicious moment for the Pope and your lordship. I am on the way back to England. It remains for Rome to do the needful; all hopes of which rests on your authority. I see things prepared of too glorious a nature, and am neither assisted nor understood.
With these present, there will be letters addressed to Rome for Master Falcone. I write to the Pope, and beg you to forward the whole by a trusty messenger.
By letters from Master Antonio della Torre, dated 4th March, I was informed of what had been ordered there, and answered by the above written messenger, “Non qui incipit, sed qui perseveraverit, salvus erit.”
I am today to have an interview with the Dauphin at Brussels, where he is expecting me for a conference about important matters relating to this business. Within three days I shall attend the Council of the Duke (Philip of Burgundy), whence I will write to your lordship. Mechlin, 27 April 1461.
Signed: “F. Interamnensis Apostolicæ Sedis Legatus.”
Detained until 1st May. And here (at Bruges) I found your letters concerning the mission of Master Antonio della Torre to Rome. We are not asleep here. I am going tomorrow to present myself before the Council of this Duke, where I hope to find Master Prospero. I shall then go to England.
Addressed: “To the most illustrious the Lord Duke of Milan.”
[Copy. Latin, 3 pages.]
April 27. Sforza Archives, Milan. 378. Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo, to Checco di Calabria, minister of Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan.
As we are about to mount on horseback we do not write fully, but you will see what I write to our Duke [about] the glorious victory obtained by our friends in England, the like of which was never heard. We are going thither, in order to arrive whilst the event is fresh, and to follow up our designs. We departed in time to be safe. 28,000 men have been killed in one battle, including 11 of the greatest lords of the other side. I recommend to you the accompanying letters which we are writing to the [Romish] Court, to the Pope and others, addressed to Master Falcone. Our Duke ought to write to England; and we will perhaps send you the list according to our plan. By letters from Master Antonio della Torre we have seen your assiduity and zeal. Mechlin, 27 April 1461.
Signed: “Your brother Interamnensis Legatus.”
Detained until the 1st May at Bruges. We have received letters from the Duke and from yourself about the coming of Master Antonio della Torre. No further reply is needed. Do you now bestir yourselves over there, for here we are not asleep.
Addressed: “To the Magnificoe the Lord Cicho de Calabria.”
[Copy. Italian, 1½ page.]
June 2. Sforza Archives, Milan. 379. Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo, to Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan.
Since his last, although affairs there proceed rather slowly, they are as usual favourable to King Edward. Incloses a copy of his letter to the Pope, (fn. 10) that the Duke may become acquainted with the entire state of the western parts, namely, England, France, Scotland, and Flanders. Is awaiting the decision his statement may produce at Rome, his own opinion being that there is a tine opportunity for doing great and important things. The Milanese ambassador departed several days ago, and is he believes near Bruges. Will remain where he is till it be time to cross the sea. Exhorts the Duke not to drop the negotiation commenced by his ambassador, as it is of great importance for the Milanese, it pleasing him the more, as he had a hand in it and made a good beginning with that Lord (Warwick?).
St. Omer, 2nd June 1461.
[Copy. Italian, 2 pages.]
June 10. Sforza Archives, Milan. 380. The same to the same.
Has met at Antwerp the Milanese envoys Count Lodovico Dallugo and the noble Zenon, who delivered letters of credence from the Duke of Milan, and informed him that they were commissioned to cross over to England, without however alluding to the instructions given to Master Prospero, nor to the matters announced by the Lords in England and by the Bishop himself, and which were likewise intrusted to Master Antonio [Delia Torre]. Master Prospero, then at Antwerp, announced the receipt of orders from the Duke to return to Italy after executing his chief commission, but had not yet got the letters requisite for his passage to England. He appears embarrassed and the Bishop is rather annoyed, and requests the Duke to write to him what he is to do. Meanwhile should a favourable opportunity offer for crossing will form such resolve as shall seem most to the honour of the Duke; most especially having already notified to the King and Warwick what is aforesaid, lest those Lords take offence. That Lord (the Duke of Burgundy?) hopes Prospero's chief commission will be executed agreeably; and approves of the intention of crossing alluded to by the Bishop. As I am trustworthy concerning affairs in these parts, by reason of my knowledge of those of Italy, and especially of your duchy, it would be advantageous for you always to have an envoy in that kingdom and in these parts. Provided we lack not support from Rome, you will witness things of importance and much to your satisfaction.
Antwerp, 10 June 1461,
[Copy, Italian, 2 pages.]
1461. June 14. Sforza Archives, Milan. 381. Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan, to King Edward IV.
After the receipt of your Majesty's letters by Lord Antonio della Torre, your servant and envoy, we learnt quite recently from Prospero Camulio, our servant, the memorable victory whereby, through consummate military skill and personal valour, your Majesty obtained that kingdom of England, annexing it to your dominions.
We have always been anxious for your glory and exaltation, as you will have heard from the said Prospero (. . . . . . eo Prospero debuit . . . . . . accepisse).
We have declared our joy to Lord Antonio della Torre, who is now returning to your Majesty. Vouchsafe credence to him touching this matter, the good will of the Pontiff, and the state of Italian affairs.
[Copy. Latin, 1 page.]
June 14. Sforza Archives, Milan. 382. Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan, to Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo, Apostolic Legate.
We have received your lordship's letters of the 8th ult. from St. Omer, about your return to England. We will write to Prospero Camuglio, our servant, to accompany you. We suppose that Prospero will have followed you. Master Antonio della Torre is now returning to those parts, fully informed as to the Pope's excellent disposition towards you, and the condition of Italy. We request to be kept constantly acquainted with the affairs of that kingdom.
Milan, 14 June 1461.
[Copy. Italian, 1 page.]
July 9. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 25. 383. Doge Pasqual Malipiero to the Captain of the Flanders Galleys.
Informs him of an announcement made to the Duke of Burgundy about sending the galleys to Sluys rather than to Antwerp, on certain conditions. Desires the captain to take all the galleys to Hampton, and there dismiss the London galley for London, and on his return from Flanders to reassemble the squadron at Hampton.
Ayes, 9.
Amendment to the foregoing letter, desiring the captain to confer with the Venetian consul at Sluys. If the captain think it unsafe for one of the galleys to remain alone at Hampton, he may do as he deems best for its security. Should he determine on remaining in Hampton, all the spices loaded for Bruges are to be put on board the two other galleys, under penalty of 1,000 ducats.
Ayes, 92. Noes, 5. Neutrals, 13.
[Latin, letter and amendment, 33 lines.]
Aug. 28. Sforza Archives, Milan. 384. Giovanni Pietro Cagnolla, of Lodi, to Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan.
By my letter, dated London, the last day of July, I acquainted you with what was passing in England. The Earl of Warwick has gone towards Yorkshire, a province opposed to that King, and very friendly to King Henry. I believe it will submit to King Edward, considering that favour fails King Henry on every side, and seeing at their backs the Earl of Warwick, who does them great mischief, and but for whom those people would have joined King Henry and taken the field again; but Warwick has prevented this, nor can they now succour the King or do any thing further.
King Edward is going towards Wales, where King Henry and the Queen now are, from fear of their doing something, as they would have done, but for the death of the King of France, as the Duke of Somerset had already crossed to this side of the Channel, to lead the French troops to the camp in Wales; 20,000 men having been mustered for this expedition, and on the said Duke's arrival at a town called Eu, news came of the said King's death, and so the Duke of Somerset was stayed, and remains at the disposal of the new King of France.
Tomorrow morning we depart hence on our return to Antwerp to another fair, which commences on 8th September, as the Count purposes buying some good horses for you, and then seems inclined to visit the King of France and the Duke of Burgundy, who are in Paris, as he says he promised them this when he went to England.
Bruges, 28 August 1461.
Signed: “Johannes Petrus Cagnolla de Laude.”
[Copy. Italian, 1½ page.]
Aug. 30. Sforza Archives, Milan. 385. [Count Ludovico Dallugo] to Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan.
I have returned from. England, having announced my journey thither by a former letter. I was well received, and as much honour was done me as possible by the King and the lords and gentlemen of his court. All the Italian merchants in London who came to visit me, Venetians, Genoese, and Florentines, told me that at no time was so much honour paid to any embassy. King Edward loves you as if you were his father. I repeatedly asked the King's good leave to come away, and always by fair words he made me delay, taking me every day to his castles and chases. On my departure he came from London as far as Sandwich, the passage seaport, a distance of seventy miles, visiting (on the way) his towns, whose inhabitants bear him so much love, that they adore him like a God, so that his affairs proceed from good to better daily. The lords adherent to King Henry are all quitting him, and come to tender obedience to this King, and at this present, one of the chief of them has come, by name Lord de Rivers, with one of his sons (Richard de Widvile Lord Rivers), men of very great valour. I held several conversations with this Lord de Rivers about King Henry's cause and what he thought of it, and he answered me that the cause was lost irremediably. King Henry has withdrawn himself to a country called Wales, belonging to a brother of his by the mother's side; which country is on the borders of England towards Scotland, a sterile place, and but little productive. Had it abounded in provisions, King Edward would have marched to drive him out, but he has now determined to wait until after the harvest, as it will supply him with victuals.
I have purchased nine very handsome hackneys, all white, though they are rather young. We could not get any others by reason of these wars, and what with our rough passage across, and the embarkation and disembarkation, they were a little frightened, so I have brought them here to Bruges and will let them rest awhile.
On my departure from Milan, you commissioned me on my way to England to speak on the subject to Monsieur the Dauphin, now King, and to the Duke of Burgundy, and to do as they recommended me. They advised me to go, and when I quitted them, asked me to see them on my return. Owing to this present revolution at Genoa, I have remained here a short time, but am recommended to go; so I shall depart tomorrow morning, and visit their lordships in Paris, and enquire whether they have any commands for your lordship. After which I shall move homewards, and try whether at the fair of Antwerp or in these other towns I can find a few good horses for you; to whom I recommend myself, as also to my mother-in-law and to Count Galeazzo.
Bruges, 30 August. Signature illegible [? Ludovico Dallugo].
[Copy. Italian, 3½ pages.]
Sept. 23. Sforza Archives, Milan. 386. Francesco Coppini, Bishop of Teramo, Apostolic Legate, to Francesco Sforza, Duke of Milan
I wrote back lately by your lordship's courier, Baptista, in full, sending memorials and all requisite information, and informing you of the excellent disposition towards you and your duchy of this King. I hope that already you have heard the like through Master Prospero. Matters are settling themselves and mending constantly; also since the arrival of the Pope's Legate, Monsignor Attrebatense, who has been received and acknowledged by this King.
As the Pope wishes to make some agreement between these two Kings, and as he of England daily shows, and most especially by the inclosed letter from Master Antonio della Torre, that my presence [there] would be agreeable to him; it has seemed fit to Monsignor Attrebatense that I should go over there, now that the things are warm, to give some beginning to the said agreement. Before the arrival of your ambassadors I shall have returned, for in a month at the farthest I shall dispatch my business, as the passage is open and safe for me, on the part of either King.
Yesterday after the reception of the said Legate, whilst I was talking with the King, he told me to see in detail what I wanted of him as a proof of his favour and grace towards me; and this chanced on account of past events, and because the King his father (Charles VII.) made a demonstration complaining of me heretofore, of which he perhaps disapproved. Thus, thank God, all is well, should they do the like over there (at Rome).
During this interval, I leave one of my attendants with the said Legate, for whatever may occur; and his lordship will give me one of his own people, that he may the more easily transmit advices concerning what is necessary. Write to the King, to the Duke (of Burgundy) and to me.
Paris, 23 September 1461.
Signed: “Friar Bishop of Teramo, Legate of the Apostolic See.”
Addressed: “To the Lord Francesco Sforza Visconti, Duke of Milan,” &c.
[Copy. Italian, 2 pages.]
1462. Jan. 26. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 43. 387. Doge Pasqual Malipiero to the Captain of the Flanders Galleys.
Orders him to hasten his return and to do all he can to the like effect with the master of the London galley.
[Latin, 9 lines.]
Jan. 26. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 43. 388. Doge Pasqual Malipiero to the Vicecaptain of the London Galley.
Commands him with all possible diligence to hasten the dispatch of the galley intrusted to him. Has transmitted a similar command to the captain of the galleys, desiring him to return with the vicecaptain's galley and all others according to the auction contract. Unless this mandate be fully obeyed, the Doge will make over those who may be the cause of such omission to the State attorneys.
[Latin, 9 lines.]
March 9. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 50. 389. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders and London voyage.
[Latin, 259 lines.]
1463. March 12. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 109. 390. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders voyage.
Amendment proposing the mission of a fifth galley.
[Latin, 222 lines.]
April 14. In the Library of the Venetian Archives. Miscell. No. 51. 391. Protest of a Bill of Exchange for 150 ducats.
Drawn at Venice on 11th January 1463 by Fortin Dandolo, at usance, in favour of Marin Dandolo and Francesco Dandolo, and on them, at the exchange of 47d. per ducat.
According to the billbroker, Christian of Bologna, then residing in London, the ducat there was worth 41d. sterling and eight “met~” (sic).
Attestation of the Notary.
[The bill in Italian, the body of the document in Latin. Parchment, 18 lines.]
April 15. In the Library of the Venetian Archives. Miscell. No. 51. 392. Protest of a Bill of Exchange for 150 ducats.
Drawn at Venice on 6th January 1463 by Fortin Dandolo, at usance, in favour of Paulo de' Priuli and on him.
According to the billbroker, Christian of Bologna, the ducat was worth 41d. sterling and eight “met~” (sic). Then follows the notarial attestation.
[The bill in Italian, the rest of the document in Latin. Parchment, 18 lines.]
1464. Feb. 24. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 150. 393. Decree of the Senate.
Bernardo Giustinian, consul of their merchants in London, announces that the factory there is so burdened with debts, that unless a speedy remedy be applied, it must relapse into its former difficulties.—Put to the ballot, that cloths and other English merchandise exported by Venetian merchants, either in their own names or in the names of aliens in Venetian galleys or ships, from any place soever, for Spain, Barbary. Majorca, and Italy, do pay rivepence for every pound sterling to the factory, in like manner as paid by goods imported into Venice from England. By these means the quota will be easily liquidated. The consul is empowered to fine both the merchants and masters of the galleys should they load or receive merchandise which has not paid this quota. The act to come into force on the next voyage.
[Latin, 19 lines.]
Feb. 24. Senato Mar. v. vii. p. 156. 394. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders voyage.
The two London galleys to be dismissed as usual on making the coast of England.
[Latin, 229 lines.]
Oct. 5. Sforza Archives, Milan. 395. News Letter from Bruges.
Some Venetian merchants have arrived from London, which they left on the 26th September. They say the plague is at work there, at the rate of 200 per diem, and thus writes Carlo Ziglio. They also say that the marriage of King Edward will be celebrated shortly, but without stating where; it seems that the espousals and benediction are already over, and thus has he determined to take the daughter of my Lord de Rivers, a widow with two children, having long loved her, it appears. The greater part of the lords and the people in general seem very much dissatisfied at this, and for the sake of finding means to annul it, all the peers are holding great consultations in the town of Reading, where the King is. This Council will likewise discuss the affair of the new coinage, which the King is having made, one-fourth lighter than the old, and wills it to be of the same currency as the other; at this the people murmur, and are dissatisfied. The writer does not know whether the Earl of Warwick and Carlo Ziglio [Chiarenza, for Duke of Clarence?] are there, nor do the merchants who have come from London say any tiling about them.
The Count de Charolois is in Holland, and daily expected at Ghent, according to report. He is said to have caused the arrest of a bastard, Rubeinpre (sic), who with two comrades landed from an armed caravel at Gorcum. Much is said about this matter; over there you will have heard of it, being nearer the source.
Bruges, 5 October 1464.
[Copy. Italian, 1½ page.]
1465. March 28. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 17. 396. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders and London voyage.
General regulations as formerly.
The presents sent by the officials of the Accountants' Office to the King of England and the Duke of Burgundy to be paid with the first money derived from averages, namely, half on arrival and half on the return, in like manner as the masters of the arsenal are paid.
[Latin, 237 lines.]
1465. Sept. 9. Deliberazioni Senato Secreta. v. xxii. p. 115. 397. Doge Christoforo Moro and the Senate to Edward IV.
Had been gratified by his Majesty's letters of the 25th July touching what had been done by the Venetian fleet against the Isle of Rhodes, and urging the State to obtain satisfaction. Thank the King, and lay before him the origin of these hostilities.
“It is the ancient custom of the State to send annually some of its galleys on a trading voyage to Barbary. In the present year the Republic's said galleys, after quitting Alexandria, touched at Rhodes as customary; on board were many Moorish merchants, with their merchandise of no small value, whom it had been necessary to receive, lest, in addition to the burdensome war now being waged with Mahomet II., the Republic should also excite the wrath of the Soldan (Abousaid Khoschkadam), it being known to the State that Mahomet had sent ambassadors to him, proposing that he should attack her.”
Before our galleys entered the harbour of Rhodes, the Grand Master (Pedro Raimondo Zacosta) made a hostile attack on the galleys of the State with several of his own galleys and other armed ships. Many of our subjects were wounded, some killed; our galleys were given up to plunder, and all the Moors, together with their effects, were seized and imprisoned, the Grand Master showing himself inflexible to all our prayers in their favour.
When the circumstance became known in Syria and Egypt our noblemen, citizens, and merchants in those parts, with much property belonging to our subjects, were by the Soldan's order cruelly seized and taken in irons to Cairo, miserably kept in harsh captivity, and threatened with death, it being asserted that the seizure of the Moors had taken place by our means. We of necessity ordered our captain-general on the sea against the Turk to go with the fleet to Rhodes to redeem the Moors, and to attempt all means in preference to the sword.
We cannot pass over in silence that the Grand Master, professing himself the defender of the faith, is indeed of a contrary disposition, and by means of an embassy has entered upon an agreement with the Turk.
Our fleet went to Rhodes; during three consecutive days, by letters, messengers, and ambassadors, our captain-general left nothing untried to induce the Grand Master to surrender the Moors and their property by fair means, but he, instigated by incredible obstinacy and avarice, contrary moreover to the advice of many of his comrades, would do nothing whatever. At length, when the captain-general of our fleet resorted to other remedies, everything was arranged by mutual agreement and compromise, the Moors being released, and such property as could be found restored. If, perchance, in consequence of the landing of our forces, anything disagreeable to your Majesty was done, we regret it.
Although the Moors reached their homes, the release of our subjects and their property will not take place without very heavy expenditure. We have therefore sent a formal embassy to the Soldan, and doubtless, according to the Barbary fashion, we shall need a considerable sum of money to exempt our subjects, and can affirm with truth that the damage done us will exceed the sum of many thousand ducats.
Your Majesty will judge how grievous all these things are; and for the truth of our just remonstrance we have sent this letter, considering it very certain that if the Lord Prior of England had received the true account of this circumstance he would have abstained from making any complaint against our subjects. Nay, had he been in Rhodes at that time, everything would have been pacifically arranged by means of his habitual wisdom, authority, and ability.
398. Doge Christoforo Moro and the Senate to the Lord Robert Prior of St. John's of Jerusalem in England.
To the same effect as the preceding.
Similar letters were written to the Earl of Warwick; to the Reverend Lord Brother John Langstrother, most worthy Precepter of the Order of St. John of Jerusalem.
Ayes, 120. Noes, 2. Neutrals, 0.
[Latin, 76 lines.]
1466. May 1. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 70. 399. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders and London voyage, namely, The Pesara of London, The Pesara of Bruges, and two galleys.
General regulations. Of the two London galleys one, either by agreement, or by lot to be drawn before quitting Venice, is bound to come by the coast of Barbary, having first of all loaded in England fine and other cloths and goods for Barbary, with the exception of copper and tin, and of copper and tin manufactures, under penalty of 500 ducats to each of the masters, of losing the freight, and of privation for ten years of the mastership of any galleys; one third of the fine to go to the informer, one third to the State attorneys, and one third to the Signory.
[Latin, 257 lines.]
Aug. 6. In the Library of the Venetian Archives. Miscell. No. 51. 400. Protest of a Bill of Exchange for 420 ducats.
Drawn at Venice on 28th April 1466 by Francesco Daoxnago, at usance, on Francesco Guidicioni, at the exchange of 50d. per ducat.
The billbroker, Manfredi de Nochj, certified to the notary that in London, on 29th July 1466, when the bill became due, the Venetian ducat was worth 46½d.
[The bill in Italian, the rest of the document in Latin. Parchment, 30 lines.]
Sept. 2. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 92. 401. Decree of the Senate.
That a letter be written to London, suspending the brokers, Thomas Spendi and Christopher Marchio, at the request made on behalf of Michael Pizamano and Lorenzo Contarini; nor may any Venetian subjects deal with them until they pay their legal debt, under penalty of paying the debt themselves.
[Latin, 10 lines.]
1467. March 21. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 111. 402. Decree of the Senate.
Of the cost of the two western couriers, one half is paid by the London factory and the other half by the Bruges factory; who, although bound to deliver the Bruges letters at Bruges, and those of London in London, contrary to their obligation do not take the London letters to London, but leave them at Bruges, very much to the inconvenience of the London merehants.—Put to the ballot, that the said couriers shall not leave the letters of the London merchants at Bruges, but take them to London, under penalty of 25 ducats each and privation from office.
Ayes, 112. Noes, 3. Neutrals, 1.
[Latin, 9 lines.]
March 21. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 116. 403. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders and London voyage.
General regulations.
[Latin, 250 lines.]
April 18. Sforza Archives, Milan. 404. Emmanuel de Jacopo and Giovanni Pietro Panicharolla to Galeazzo Maria Sforza, Duke of Milan.
The King of France has told us in secret that he wishes you to be acquainted with the course of his affairs, accounting you his brother and especial friend, and knowing us to be faithful. Although the negotiation be secret he chose to announce the whole to us, charging us and requesting you to keep it secret.
The King has a secret understanding with King Edward of England through the Earl of Warwick, and they have agreed, that between this and the eighth of next May the said Earl is to be with his Majesty, who has already sent him an ample safeconduct, with a fitting mandate, to conclude everything. They are already agreed for the most part, thus—King Edward and the King of France henceforth and for ever become brothers in arms; perpetual peace is made between the kingdoms of England and France; and King Edward will quit and renounce all right, claim, and title on the kingdom of France. The French King will give him his second daughter for the second brother of King Edward, (the elder brother being married to the daughter of the said Earl,) giving as dowry part of the territory of the Duke of Burgundy and of the Count of Charolois, on whom they have agreed to wage a war of extermination; and they will partition between them the territory of those two lords as follows: King Edward to have for his said brother the lordship of Holland, Zeland, and Brabant; his Majesty of France taking Verno [sic for Verdun?] the county of Flanders, and the rest of their dominions. To thwart any understanding Charolois might have with the English, and to alienate him entirely, as he purposed marrying King Edward's sister, they are treating a marriage between her and Philip of Savoy. For the conclusion of this matter, although he pretends to be on his way to Paris, he will go to Rouen, there to meet the Earl of Warwick and the brother of the Count de St. Pol. After the settlement of this agreement, they will commence the war against the said Lords of Burgundy, who have sought to expel his Majesty; and although at the commencement he forgave what Charolois had done, by giving him his daughter, yet has his Majesty sought constantly to ruin him, being of opinion that, with his own forces and with the assistance of Philip of Savoy, the Switzers of Berne, the people of Liege, and the English, they will commence such a war that the Duke of Burgundy and Charolois will be unable to withstand the shock.
Should this succeed, King Lewis says he will desire the Duke of Britanny to send him his brother the Duke de Berri, whose escape from Britanny he is nevertheless endeavouring to effect, by means of certain negotiations with the Spanish ambassadors here; and he doubts not but that the said ambassadors will send him for fear of losing their substance; if not, he will fit shoes to their feet. The King wishes to demonstrate his gratitude for the service you have rendered him, and says that for concluding this negotiation King Edward had written him an autograph letter, and never did the like until now.
Blois, 18 April 1467.
Signed: “Emmanuel de Jacopo-Johannes Petrus Panicharolla.”
Addressed: “To the most Illustrious Prince and most Excellent Lord, the Lord Galeaz Maria Sforza Visconti, Duke of Milan.”
[Copy. Italian, 5 pages.]
May 5. Sforza Archives, Milan. 405. Giovanni Pietro Panicharolla to the Duchess and Duke of Milan.
The Marquis de Pont (sic), son of the Duke John, has quitted Nanci in Lorraine, and is gone to visit his aunt, late Queen of England, who has also withdrawn into Lorraine with a son of hers, aged thirteen, having no other place of refuge. She is subsequently to come and reside here at the Court.
Chartres, 5 May 1467.
[Extract, Italian.]
July 28. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 136. 406. Motions made in the Senate in consequence of a letter from the captain of the Flanders galleys, proposing to anticipate the period of his departure on the homeward voyage.
Put to the ballot, that on the arrival in London of the messenger with the present letters, the consul there do summon the masters of the galleys, and inquire whether they are willing to depart before the period assigned by their auction contract. If they consent, the captain is bound to depart ten days after.
Ayes, 10.
First amendment:—That on the expiration of the month of August next the captain do quit Hampton on his way back to Venice.
Ayes, 36, 32, 22, 7.
Second amendment:—That the London consul be bound to assemble the Council of Twelve, should the galleys be at Hampton on the arrival of the said messenger; if that number of noblemen be not on the spot, the commons and the priors to have admission into the Council. Should the galleys not yet have reached that place, their arrival to be awaited. Whatsoever three fourths of the Council enjoin about the return of the galleys, the captain to he bound to execute, provided the departure do not take place within ten days after the arrival of the messenger.
Ayes, 2.
Third amendment:—That the captain of the Flanders galleys be written to, should he arrive in Hampton in the course of July down to the middle of August, to remain there the whole of August. If he arrive there after the middle of that month, 15 days to be assigned him for his stay there.
Ayes, 35, 55, 65, 83.
[Latin, 20 lines.]
Aug. 12. Deliberazioni Senato Secreta. v. xxiii. p. 60. 407. Decree of the Senate concerning announcements made by the Bishop of Tournai, a prelate on his way to Rome as ambassador from the new Duke of Burgundy (Charles the Bold).
Said that his Duke's friendship and alliance had been sought by many potentates and princes; that he had concluded a league with four of the Electors of the Empire. Also, that there was a close negotiation, with the hope of conclusion, for his making a marriage with the sister of the King of England. Exhorts the Signory to send an embassy of congratulation to the Duke on his accession.
Election of an ambassador to this effect.
Ayes, 98.
[Latin, 24 lines.]
Sept. 12. Sforza Archives, Milan. 408. Giovanni Pietro Panicharolla to the Duchess and Duke of Milan.
This King's ambassadors have lately returned from England; and the Earl of Warwick having met with many opponents to his plan, they found him unable to effect what he had promised on his departure. They are therefore returned without any positive settlement: nor are matters adjusted between the English King, who seems very averse to France, and Warwick; they are constantly at strife. The Welshmen have taken up arms against King Edward, and proclaim Henry, whose next brother, late resident here, is going over there, and the late Queen is sending him some of her followers to make their party take the field if possible. King Lewis complains bitterly that the Earl of Warwick has made so many promises devoid of any result. According to report, the Earl has retired to his estates to raise troops.
The King of Castile (Henry IV., the Impotent,) has had an ambassador in England and concluded a league with King Edward, which has been proclaimed, both parties accepting and reserving place for the King of Arragon (John II.) and Duke of Burgundy (Charles the Bold).
Paris, 12 September 1467.
Signed: “Johannes Petrus Panicharolla.”
Addressed: “Dñis Ducisse ac Duci Mediolani.”
[Extract, Italian.]
1468. Jan. 28. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 151. 409. Decree of the Senate, caused by news of the arrival at Sluys on 10th December of the Flanders galleys, with the exception of the Flag galley.
Should the captain in consequence be detained at Sluys beyond the period assigned by the auction contract, the captains and masters to be at liberty, if, on arriving at, Hampton on the homeward voyage, they find the London galley in readiness, to depart before the expiration of the days assigned them, though the captain must not remain in Hampton less than 20 days. This decree to be announced to the consul at Bruges.
Ayes, 121. Noes, 5. Neutrals, 7.
[Latin, 15 lines.]
Feb. 13 Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 156. 410. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders voyage.
General regulations.
[Latin, 282 lines.]
March 12. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 163. 411. Decree of the Senate.
As no notice has yet been received of the arrival in Flanders of the galley of Luca Moro, captain of the galleys on that voyage, this delay renders it necessary to provide for the mode of dispatching the said galleys.—Put to the ballot, that the masters of the galleys at Sluys be at liberty to go to Hampton, there to await their captain; for in the meanwhile they may see to expediting the departure of their galleys.
Ayes, 135. Noes, 2. Neutrals, 2.
[Latin, 8 lines.]
April 20. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 167. 412. Doge Cristoforo Moro to “Ser” Luca Moro, Captain of the Flanders galleys.
Limited the period of his stay over there, on the expiration of which he was to depart thence. Supposes he has executed this command and gone to England; but if he still be in Flanders, which the Doge cannot believe, commands him to depart thence without delay.
Ayes, 119. Noes, 0. Neutrals, 0.
[Italian, 6 lines.]
May 19. Senato Mar. v. viii. p. 171. 413. Doge Cristoforo Moro to “Ser” Luca Moro, Captain of the Flanders galleys.
On the 5th instant it was resolved in the Council of the Senate to write to him, as he will see by the accompanying letter. Subsequently heard that the London galley, which has for master Marco Justinian, is disarmed, and were it to quit that port in its present state, without taking its complement of men, it would incur manifest peril. Regrets this, considering the importance of the galley, and the great loss which in case of accident would befall the Venetian citizens whose property is on board of it. Commands him therefore, should he be at Bruges, to hire there from 25 to 30 men, and take them with him to Hampton. On reaching that place he is to draft from the galleys then with him as many men as he deems sufficient, and send them by land to the above written Justiniana galley in London, so that it may betake itself to him at Hampton. On its arrival he is to send back the men to their own galleys, and to place on board the said galley the 25 or 30 hired at Bruges, by all means contriving to take the rest of the men required at Hampton, and manning it with as many different nations as possible. He is to take the money required for manning the galley, if the master will not disburse it, by bill of exchange, and at the risk of the galley's freights, making the primage and freights from Sicily and Barbary accountable for it likewise. Should he, however, not be at Bruges, but in England, he must send from the galleys with him to the Giustiniana galley such amount [of hands] as seems fit.
Moreover, on the 30th ult., wrote to him that if he had not yet quitted Flanders for England, to go thither immediately. Repeats this command.
Ayes, 153. Noes, 1. Neutrals, 0.
[Italian, 40 lines.]
June 16. Sforza Archives, Milan. 414. Giovanni Pietro Panicharolla to the Duke of Milan.
The betrothal of the sister of the King of England to the Duke of Burgundy has been settled, but not carried into effect. The espousals have recently been postponed until the 24th inst, as the dower, to be derived from a tax on the towns of the kingdom, has not yet been paid. That King is a poor man, nor can he, save with difficulty and time, raise any large sum, especially as he has of late laid another tax on the lords, barons, and towns of the kingdom, for the maintenance of the forces now being raised against France, which could not be kept on foot otherwise. So it is suspected that the marriage will again be deferred, in which case it will perhaps never take place. Should the said Duke have a conference with the King Lewis, that King will do his utmost to break this family connection; such being his Majesty's intention.
The Admiral of France, having recently captured two English ships loaded with spices and merchandise on their homeward voyage from the Levant, was attacked by a seacaptain in the service of the King of Spain, who captured him and took the said ships. When the Frenchman demanded release, as the King of France was not at war with Spain, the Spaniards told him not to think of it, as he would do this and worse if in his power, reminding him of the reprisals granted against the Spaniards, and of their property which had been taken by the French. On this account it is suspected that the Spaniards have an understanding with the English, and that together they mean to fit out a combined fleet against this kingdom. In this case it will be requisite to form fresh plans but as yet there is no further certainty of this.
“Ex Castro Bri-Conte Robech [Brie-Comte-Robert?] prope Parisiis, die xvi. mensis Junij 1468.”
Addressed: “Duci Mediolani.”
[Extract, Italian.]
1468. Sept. 9. In the Library of the Venetian Archives. Miscell. No. 51. 415. Protest of a Bill of Exchange for 100 ducats.
Drawn at Venice on 4th June 1468, by Zuane Gradenigo, at usance, on Toma Mocenigo and Bernardo Justiniano, to be paid to themselves.
The billbroker Manfred de Nochj declared that in London, on the 5th September 1468, the ducat was worth 49d.
[The bill in Italian, the rest of the document in Latin. Parchment, 27 lines.]
1469. March 3. Senate Mar. v. viii. p 202. 416. Decree of the Senate for fitting out four galleys for the Flanders voyage.
[Latin, 34 lines.]
June 19. Senato Mar. v. ix. p. 10. 417. Decree of the Senate.
Doubts expressed in letters from the captain of the Flanders galleys lest he be prevented returning at the time stipulated by his auction contract, as the masters do not speed the loading of the galleys as due.—Put to the ballot, to write to the viceconsul in London, desiring him to charge the master of the galley there and the merchants to hasten the dispatch of the said galley to the utmost, so that at the period assigned it depart thence and join its captain. Urgent orders to the viceconsul to effect this, and to the captain to impress the like on the masters of the other galleys.
Ayes, 131. Noes, 0. Neutrals, 3.
[Latin, 14 lines.]
July 10. Senate Mar. v. ix. p. 12. 418. Doge Christopher Moro to the Captain of the Flanders galleys.
Understands that the galley bound for the Barbary coast will not have any cargo for Barbary, though it can obtain freight for Venice if it come with the others. Is most willing to accommodate the merchants and the masters at the same time. Therefore commands him to write to the consul in London to assemble the Venetian merchants, and learn whether there is any freight for Barbary. If there be none, and the masters of the galleys be of this mind, absolves the said galley from the obligation of coming by the coast. It may return with the captain to Venice. Charges him to depart thence at the period assigned him.
Ayes, 137. Noes, 4. Neutrals, 3.
[Italian, 12 lines.]
July 20. Senate Mar. v. ix. p. 13. 419. Decree of the Senate.
By letters from Marco de Ca de Pesaro, consul in London, and merchants of Bruges and London, it is known that the pirate Columbus, with eight ships and bellingers, is in the Flemish channel, there awaiting the Venetian galleys and ships with intent to damage them; and should the ships come singly, the mischief might not be limited to mere damage.—Put to the ballot, that the consul in Bruges and London be written to, to order the captains of Venetian ships in those regions to betake themselves with their vessels to the captain of the Flanders galleys, remaining under his command, and accompanying him until he be out of danger from the said pirate.
Should it behove the ships to await the galleys, be an average made to defray the cost of their demurrage, payable thus: one third by the goods, freight, and tonnage of our ships, according to rate, and two thirds by the merchants and freights of the said galleys.
[Latin, 16 lines.]
Oct. 26. In the Library of the Venetian Archives. Miscell. No. 51. 420. Protest of a Bill of Exchange for 200 ducats.
Drawn at Venice on 27th June 1469, by Hieronimo Scoto, at usance, on Stoldo Altoviti.
The billbroker Manfred de Nequis (sic) declared that the Venetian ducat was then worth in London 49¾d.
[Italian and Latin. Parchment, 25 lines.]
Nov. 20. Sforza Archives, Milan. 421. Sforza de' Bettini to the Duke of Milan.
From England one never has one thing like another, but always more dissimilar than the day is to the night.
The latest intelligence received thence by the King of France is that the Earl of Warwick had gone northwards to take possession of the castles and estates of those lords whom he caused to be beheaded, and was accompanied by the King of England who went about at large, taking his pleasure hunting, where he pleased. Being one day in the country, the King started off for London and entered that city, where he was received very willingly and kingly. He seems to be much loved by the Londoners, who detest the said Earl; and there he is endeavouring to raise as great a force as he can against Warwick.
The person who announces this to King Lewis implies that King Edward has already a large army, which, he says, has deserted Warwick, [consisting of] lords and military commanders who have gone to join the King, and that the Earl and the Duke of Clarence are mustering all the men they can, meaning to go in quest of him and fight a fresh brittle. If this is true, the Earl has proved himself utterly ignorant of the Italian adage: The man who should not be bound should not be loosed. (fn. 11)
King Lewis has stayed the departure from Normandy of Mons. de Concressault, (fn. 12) who was going over to the Earl of Warwick, until he knows what end the affairs of England may make.
The King of England has received the Order of the Fleece from the Duke of Burgundy as an additional mark of the union and confederacy between them.
Tours, 20 November 1469.
Signed: “Sfortia de Bettini.”
Addressed: “Domino Duci Mediolani.”
[Extract, Italian.]
1469. Nov. 25. Deliberazioni Senato Secreta. v. xxiv. p. 67. 422. Doge Cristoforo Moro and the Senate to the Venetian Consul in London.
Received his letter of the 29th ultimo about the garboil to which he has been subjected by William Cooper and Zuan Bruzexe [John Bridges ?]. Regrets the trouble thus given him; and, in accordance with the opinion of the merchants over there, is writing to the King [of England] and to the lords noted in his memorandum. Encloses a copy of the letters, (fn. 13) in which the King is informed how the capture of that ship on its way from Constantinople occurred; and, by the arguments in it, the consul will be able to defend his case, till the Doge can give him a more detailed account of everything. He is to present the accompanying letters. In the meanwhile the Doge will contrive to have breves from the Pope to the King and those lords; and he will write to Burgundy to his ambassador to obtain letters of favour from the Duke to the said King, which he hopes will profit the consul, by reason of the matrmonial alliance between them. Will send him the process, juridicially drawn up, and the breves.
Were it possible to make a compromise with the Englishmen it would be agreeable, for the avoidance of costs, extortion, and other inconvenience. He is to endeavour to compromise the matter with the above written, offering them by degrees 1,000 ducats, in satisfaction for the damage and loss which they say they have incurred through the capture of the said ship. This decree to be kept secret to himself.
[Italian, 21 lines.]
Dec. 8. Sforza Archives, Milan. 423. Sforza de' Bettini to the Duke of Milan.
No other news from England, save that the King is still said to be very well reestablished, and the war between the said King and Earl of Warwick is greater than ever.
Monsieur de Concressault yet tarries in Normandy without proceeding further till the result of affairs in England be known.
Tours, 8 December 1469.
[Extract, Italian.]
1470. Feb. 21. Senato Mar. v. ix. p. 33. 424. Decree of the Senate.
The case of those Englishmen and of the native of Messina, who suffered loss on board the ship intercepted by the Venetian fleet, was referred to the Sages of the Council and of the main land. From what it has been possible to understand hitherto, the loss of the Englishmen amounts to about 2,000 ducats.—Put to the ballot, that on completion of the process, and alter taking all such information and declarations as shall be deemed necessary, the said Sages do proceed to the sentence and settlement of both these suits for the damages aforesaid—what indemnity should be given, whether to the Englishmen or the native of Messina. But with regard to making effective compensation to both parties, be a report then made to this Council.
Ayes, 118. Noes, 4. Neutrals, 7.
[Latin, 8 lines.]
March 5. Senato Mar. v. ix. p. 35. 425. Decree of the Senate.
There have come hither those two Englishmen who were on board the ship, Andrea de' Neapoli master, captured by our fleet; and who, aggrieved by their loss, caused the seizure in England of property belonging to our subjects to the amount of 12,000 ducats, seeking indemnity by letters of recommendation from the King. The College having examined the process drawn up by the Venetian captain, another drawn up at Scio, which the Englishmen presented, and a third process made out here, it is very clear from these that the Englishmen, by their demand for 12,000 ducats, have wandered far from fair dealing, as it is proved that their loss amounted but to 2,000 ducats; for which sum they made an agreement with the Genoese ambassador, who caused the capture of the ship.—Put to the ballot, that after justifying the rights of the Signory, and explaining the reasons for which no satisfaction from them is deserved, it be said that nevertheless, out of complaisance for the King of England, we are content to pay the Englishmen 2,000 ducats, according to the agreement made by themselves with the said Genoese; and that we will also cause them to receive 100 ducats. The payment of these moneys to be made on their accepting them as full indemnity for the whole.
Ayes, 150. Noes, 6. Neutrals, 2.
[Latin, 21 lines.]
March 13. Sforza Archives, Milan. 426. Sfoeza de' Bettixi to the Duke of Milan.
There is nothing else from England, except that the King and the Earl of Warwick are well agreed together, though as yet it is not known that they are arming for a descent in France, but it is suspected.
Tours, 13 March 1470.
[Extract, Italian.]
May 17. Senato Mar. v. ix. p. 43. 427. Decree of the Senate.
Considering the intelligence received from the Venetian ambassador in France, about the preparation making by the pirate Columbus for an attack on our subjects, it is necessary to make every provision for the defence of the Flanders galleys.—Put to the ballot, that the consuls in Bruges and London be written to, to order the commanders of the ships Malipiera and Squarcia instantly to join the captain of the Flanders galleys, and convoy him until he be out of danger from the said pirate. The said ships to await the dispatch of the galleys should they not have finished loading; to receive 500 ducats per month for their demurrage, the money being derived from the mass of the merchandise of the ships and galleys and from the galley freights; the captain to keep account of the period of demurrage, and of the merchandise of foreigners liable to this tax. The period of demurrage to commence from the arrival of the ships at the Isle of Wight. The insurances made on these ships are not to be considered vitiated on this account.
Ayes, 68. Noes, 17. Neutrals, 28.
[Latin, 13 lines.]
June 17. Senato Mar. v. ix. p. 47. 428. Decree of the Senate.
Forbidding the grant of shipping-permits for the Flanders galleys, after the 26th instant.
Ayes, 136. Noes, 4. Neutrals, 1.
[Latin, 3 lines.]


  • 1. Apparently to some correspondent in Rome.
  • 2. In the margin of the letter there is a note, thus:—“King Edward is elected, and is called the 4th (Edwardus Rex eligitur et IIII. appellator).”
  • 3. See the opening lines of the Pharsalia.
  • 4.
  • 5. It may be surmised that “Sir Richard Chancellor” is the “Richard Cañten,” to whom the Bishop of Teramo wrote on 20th February 1461.
  • 6. Pigello Portinaro, a Milanese merchant, the agent or partner of Cosmo de' Medici.
  • 7. Coppini is evidently alluding here to his awkward position at the court of Rome, and relies wholly for support on the Yorkists.
  • 8. He seems to have heen naturalized, according to the patent in Rymer, date 4th December 1460, quoted by Ellis, Series 3, vol. i. p. 88.
  • 9. By qualifying him for an English bishop, &c.
  • 10. The enclosure does not exist.
  • 11. In the original, “Che chi non è da pigliare non è da lassare.”
  • 12. John Stuart, Lord of Aubigny and Concressault in France, was the younger brother of Sir Alan Stuart, of Derneley, and the father of the renowned Bernard Stuart, Chevalier d'Aubigny, so gallantly distinguished by his martial achievements in the service of France during the campaigns in Italy against Gonsalvo de Cordova. (See Burke's Extinct Peerages, ed. 1846, p. 746.)
  • 13. This letter from the State to Edward IV. does not exist in any of the registers.