Venice: July 1513

Pages 104-109

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 2, 1509-1519. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1867.

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July 1513

July 2. Sanuto Diaries, v. xyi. p. 416. 249. Note by Sanuto that this morning it was heard that the English merchant Piero da Cordes (sic) had received letters from Rome, dated 28th June, announcing advices that the English had landed in France and fought a battle with the French with great slaughter on both sides, and that at length both armies retreated and made truce for a certain while; yet nothing was known about this in the College.
July 3. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 420. 250. Andrea Badoer to the State.
Dated London, 6th June.
25,000 English had crossed over to France, and other troops were being mustered. The King and Queen in person would also cross; the number of combatants amounted to 60,000, in most excellent order. The King's fleet had returned to the island and embarked a reinforcement of 6,000 men under the command of the Earl of Surrey. The Signory's letters had fallen into the hands of Monsignor di Anzurant (sic) (fn. 1) and being in cipher, he directed Badoer to decipher them in his presence, which was done; and having read them and understood the Signory's apologies for the league with France, he expressed dissatisfaction thereat, though the fact was known previously.
Badoer then went to the King, who denied him audience, but at length conceded it, and on hearing what the Signory had written, complained of the league made with his enemy, who formed it to deceive the State, and did not keep faith; said the Signory did wrong not to write to him, and appoint him mediator to negotiate an agreement with the Emperor; and then offered to effect this, saying that if the Signory placed themselves in the hands of the Pope, of the Catholic King, and of himself, justice would be done; or if the Signory would refer the matter to him alone, he would act with fairness and equity; and that he had written to the Emperor not to abstain from making an agreement with the Signory for a trifle.
Badoer had audience likewise of the Privy Council. Announces a letter to the Signory from the King, adding that three of his servants had been wounded by the English on account of this league made with France, and that he himself hesitated to go out of doors. By St. John's Day, the King would have crossed over to France. The troops landed at Calais were all picked men, armed with corslets, bracelets, sallets, and gorgets, and over their armour a coat (uno saion) of white and green, the King's colours. The King had enlisted 1,000 Flemish cavalry, each of whom might be considered a man-at-arms.
July 3. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 421. 251. Perusal in the Senate of a “sage” Latin letter from Henry VIII. to the Signory, dated 6th June, composed by his secretary, Carmeliano. Complains of the league made with the King of France, as he was a promise breaker and would betray the State, and offers his own mediation for peace with the Emperor.
July 4. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 427. 252. Antonio Bavarin, factor of the Pesaro firm in London, to the Pesari at Venice.
Dated London, 1st June 1513.
The King was continuing the expedition. Besides the very numerous fleet, he had last week sent the Lord Steward to Calais with 16,000 men, who were to form the vanguard; and in a week the Lord Chamberlain was to depart with the second division numbering 14,000 men, and then the King would follow with 12,000. At Calais they had 20,000 Burgundians, Picards, Germans, and Switzers; they would number 60,000 combatants. Choicer troops in more perfect order had not been seen for many years; amongst them were from 9,000 to 10,000 heavy barbed cavalry and 8,000 light horse; the infantry included 14,000 archers, and 2,000 mounted bowmen, others having long spears, halberts, and axes, and cannon that would suffice to conquer Hell. The valuables they took with them were incredible; the housings of the King's charger and the jewels around his head piece were worth 15,000 crowns, Never had a finer sight been seen.
July 4. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 427. 253. Lorenzo Pasqualigo, merchant of Venice, to his brothers Alvise and Francesco.
Dated London, 6th June.
Part of the King's troops had crossed over to Calais, and the rest, together with his Majesty in person, would follow by the 25th. The army would amount in all to some 50,000 or 60,000 men, as well supplied with arms and artillery as any army ever had been. On the other side the Channel they had also 2,500 steel-clad cavalry from the province of Hainault, and also German troops. The army marched with all possible pomp and the greatest courage. It was believed the French would not wait for them in the field. Besides the fleet, on board of which they had put 6,000 additional men, all ships reaching England were detained. The King would keep faith with his colleagues, although they act otherwise by him, especially Spain, which, according to report, had made a truce with France.
July 4. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 427. 254. Andrea Amonio, Latin Secretary of Henry VIII., to Nicolo Chafiri [Chorfi?], (fn. 2) merchant in Venice.
Dated London, 3rd June.
The Signory's peace, reconciliation, and league with the French caused great displeasure to everybody in England, as the Venetians had hitherto been universally popular there; whereas now, owing to their friendship with the French, men's minds were of necessity estranged from them; nor did all persons take into account the motives which induced the State thus to act, though many of the English lords were aware that the mischief had been caused by the Spaniards, whose fickleness had obtained for them a bad repute in England. The King might overlook the Signory's league with the French, were it not for the Emperor; and should French affairs proceed as desired, there would then be a chance of the Emperor's receiving succour from England against Venice, by reason of the close relationship and friendship between him and the King.
July 8. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 444. 255. Marco Dandolo, Venetian Ambassador in France, to the State.
Dated Paris, 6th and 9th June.
The King was there, intent on the affairs of England, who had already landed. The French had determined not to await the enemy in the field, but to keep in the towns. The captains appointed were the Duke of Bourbon and Mons. de la Palisse.
The King was negotiating an agreement with England; and had intended to engage 10,000 Switzers, but was unable to obtain them.
July 8. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 445. 256. Venetian Ambassador at Rome to the State.
Dated 2nd and 4th.
Receipt there of recent letters from France, announcing the march of the French, as the English had landed in great force, and the King of England was coming in person.
July 12. Sanuto Diaries, av. xvi. p. 471. 257. Venetian Ambassador at Rome to the State.
Dated 9th and 10th July.
Was told by the Cardinal San Severino that he had received letters from the French court, dated 26th June, how 1,500 English infantry had been routed under Boulogne; that the King of England had not crossed, but that the King of Scots had declared in favour of France, and invaded England with an army of 40,000 men.
July 14. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 478. 258. Statement made in the College by the Pope's Ambassador Bibiena.
That the English, after a demonstration of besieging Boulogne, had marched in great force against Terouenne, which town was strongly and stoutly garrisoned, having 250 spears, a number of archers, and 2,000 foot soldiers, and was expected to hold out; in which case it would be easy to imagine the result of so bold an undertaking on the part of the King of England, who had not yet crossed, though reports to the contrary were circulated.
July 14. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 480. 259. Letter from Florence, received by way of Rome, concerning the affairs of France.
Letters of the 3rd from Paris state that the English were closely besieging Terouenne; that those within defended themselves stoutly, and that the English, when encamping under the town, had captured many hundred men. It was also heard that 600 English who went from Terouenne towards Calais for provisions, were attacked by the people of Boulogne and lost 300 men and upwards, besides 70 cart horses. That three French men-at-arms and two archers had been killed, and two captains of men-at-arms wounded, names unknown. The Duke of Guelders was sending a succour of 1,000 infantry to aid the French, though it was thought the writer had omitted a cipher, and meant 10,000, which was probable, as 1,000 infantry could do but little for him. On that day, the 3rd, it was said the King of England would cross, though nothing was known for certain. Should the succour from Guelders arrive, the French would take the field.
July 23. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 497. 260. Communication by Bibiena of a letter from Florence, announcing the arrival on the 17th of the French ambassador, the Bishop of Marseilles. Also of letters from France, dated the 3rd, how, while the English were encamped under Terouenne, the besieged made a sally and caused them some loss, taking three pieces of artillery.
July 23. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 497. 261. The Bishop of Marseilles to the Procurator Andrea Griti.
Dated Florence, 18th July.
The French and English had fought a battle, in which some 15,000 men were killed, the most part English; the French were victorious.
July 23. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 500. 262. Roberto Acciajuolo, Florentine Ambassador in France, to the Signory of Florence.
Dated Paris, 3rd July 1513.
Had mentioned in his last that the landing of the King of England at Calais was not verified, and that his army was besieging Terouenne. The English had battered the place in several directions, but down to the present time their progress was small, nor had they made any assault, and the artillery of the besieged had done them much damage.
Two days before the date of the letter intelligence was received that the French had attacked 500 infantry, who were convoying provisions from Calais, and had killed some 300 men and captured 80 carthorses. Three French archers were killed, and two captains of men-at-arms wounded, namely, Monsieur de Plessi and Monsieur d'Imbrecourt; no other collision had taken place.
On that morning it was said that the King of England had disembarked at Calais, but this was not yet known for certain. Considers it desirable that the French should take the Duke of Guelders into their service, with 1,000 spears and some hundred horse; and, should they do so, they would then take the field with a considerable force in the course of July.
Understood that the Pope had appointed two legates, one to England and one to France, for the negotiation of an agreement and peace, which would be much to the purpose at this present time.
July 24. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 507. 263. Venetian Ambassador in France to the State.
Dated Paris, 13th June to 3rd July.
The King of England had not yet landed. The French had used the English roughly at Terouenne, and taken 150 provision carts, killing 500 English infantry who escorted them, while others of the same infantry escaped to a castle in Flanders. Details conversations with the King (of France), who said he should have 3,500 spears and 40,000 infantry against the English. Says most positively that the King (of France) would have 3,000 spears and 35,000 infantry.
July 24. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 507. 264. Gian Giacomo Triulzi to Andrea Griti, in Venice.
Dated Ors (sic; Tours?), duly 13th and 14th.
Advices received from France that the English had been worsted by the French. Monsieur de la Trimouille had written to him that the Switzers were quarrelling amongst themselves, and that the French had killed 2,000 English and captured three commanders, including the captain of the infantry, the Bastard of Luigne (sic) and another.
July 30. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 538. 265. The Signory of Florence to Pietro di Bibiena, Papal Ambassador at Venice.
Announce advices received from their ambassador at the French court, dated the 14th, that the King was going in person to join the army against the English, together with all the chief nobility of France, and would have 2,800 spears and 20,000 infantry.
The King of England had disembarked at Calais with 40,000 men, and was in the camp under Terouenne. The English had 2,000 horse, and were expected to give battle.
July 31. Sanuto Diaries, v. xvi. p. 541, 542. 266. The Venetian Ambassador at Rome to the State.
Dated 26th and 27th.
Receipt of letters from France from the 14th to the 18th. The King was going in force against the King of England (who had landed at Calais) with 32,000 men and 3,000 horse. The King (of France) was awaiting other troops, and would proceed with all the nobility of France to Amiens, the place of muster. The commanders-in-chief of the army were Monsieur d'Angouleme and the Duke of Bourbon; and the Duke of Guelders was expected with 10,000 infantry and a certain amount of horse. Terouenne continued firm, and the English had rather retreated than otherwise.


  • 1. The Bishop of Durham?
  • 2. See Mr. Brewer's Calendar, vol. i. p. 548, no. 3965.