Venice: July 1514

Pages 175-181

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 1514

July 1. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 276. 439. Announcement made to the Venetian College by the French ambassador, the Bishop of Asti, that he had received letters from Rome to the effect that it was hoped the agreement between his King and England would take place shortly. A marriage was being negotiated, and on the conclusion of the agreement, his King would attend to the affairs of Italy.
July 3. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 280. 440. Vetor Lippomano to—.
Dated Rome, 30th June.
The agreement with England had not yet been concluded, but, according to report, would take place: as likewise the marriage to the King's sister, who had been promised to the Archduke of Burgundy, the King of France taking her, and not the Queen widow of Scotland: and he would then attend to the affairs of Italy.
July 10. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 293. 441. Andrea Badoer to the State.
Dated 14th June.
The King had launched a large ship of — butts, called “the—.” High mass was sung, the King and Queen being both present. All the ambassadors were invited, with the exception of himself, which he considered strange, but he understood the King had been told that the Signory had sent as ambassador the greatest rogue in Venice (it più tristo homo di Venezia), so he was held in small account. Complains of not being supplied with funds for his maintenance.
July 12. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 301. 442. Vetor Lippomano to—.
Dated Rome, 3rd and 4th July.
News expected from France of the matrimonial alliance with the King of England; and it was said the French had commenced crossing the Alps, though this was untrue; nor would the King send troops until after the conclusion of the agreement, though bets were taken in banchi [the Exchange at Rome], 25 to 100, that in the course of August the French would be in Italy, and the news was expected in four days.
July 12. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 300. 443. — to Theodore Triulzi at Padua.
Dated Paris, 29th June.
The agreement with England and the marriage would certainly take place. Peace with England would be made at a much cheaper rate [than at first demanded], the King of England contenting himself with 560,000 ducats, and the two towns of Tournai and Terouenne.
July 12. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 300. 444. Andrea Badoer to the State.
Dated London, 21st June.
The French ambassador, the General of Normandy, was there negotia ting the agreement, the conclusion of which was considered certain.
July 12. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. pp. 302–305. 445. Nicolo di Favri, of Treviso, attached to the Venetian Embassy in England, to—.
Dated London, 15th June 1514.
On the 17th May the Count of Modruss arrived there with Letters.
The French, with a considerable force, had attacked Guisnes, (fn. 1) 12 miles from Calais, thinking to besiege and take the castle: but the English sallied forth, and repulsed them with much slaughter.
Two months ago, King Henry commenced sending troops across daily, it being reported he would soon follow in person, and was to have gone over in May to celebrate espousals. It was asserted he would muster 80,000 most efficient men.
On the 19th May the Pope's ambassador (sic) the Florentine Prothonotary, Dom [Leonardo Spinelli], arrived there with the sword and cap of maintenance. He was met by sundry lords in most excellent array, with some 400 horse. The streets were crowded with spectators, eager to behold the ambassador, the sword, and the hat.
These insignia were borne aloft before the Prothonotary by one of his attendants, the cap being on the point of the sword, which was held upright. The weapon was long, with a gilded guard and scabbard, and the cap seemed to be of purple satin, resembling in shape the crown of the caps worn by the Albanian light cavalry: it was a foot long, with a turned-up brim, covered with embroidery and pearls, with sundry small pendant tails [of ermine], (fn. 2)
The King was in London in the Bishop's palace adjoining St. Paul's Cathedral, the two buildings being separated by a small square (campiello), through which, on Sunday the 21st May, a grand procession moved. The Venetian ambassador was invited, and on arriving at the Bishop's palace, found the King there, and also the nobility in their robes of state. Cordial greeting was given to Badoer at the head of the stairs by the “lords,” who were as familiar with him as if he had been born an Englishman. When at length the King came forth, Badoer presented a letter he had just received from the State, but his Majesty said, “Let us now go to the holy procession and mass, after which we will dine and then confer together;” so the march commenced accordingly. The position of the episcopal palace and the cathedral might be likened to that of St. Mark's Tower and Church; and on this occasion, either for greater pomp, or to avoid contact with the crowd by reason of the plague, his Majesty went this distance on horseback, riding a most beautiful palfrey, “as black as velvet,” the nobility preceding him in pairs: the ambassador Badoer, as a mark of distinction, coming last of all immediately in advance of the King, arm-in-arm (a brazo) with the Lord High Admiral (Thomas Howard, Earl of Surrey), whose father the Lord Treasurer had recently been made a duke.
On arriving at the portal of St. Paul's, the King dismounted, and walked to the high altar, where the papal envoy stood, with the sword and cap. Advancing to meet his Majesty, he exhibited his credentials, and then delivered a brief oration in praise of him, which being ended, the King made a sign to a priest, a doctor (Dr. Tunstall), (fn. 3) to reply, as he did most excellently on the sudden, returning thanks to the Pope.
The King next knelt at the high altar, and two noblemen girded him with the sword: and on his head they placed the cap, which by reason of its length covered his whole face: both sword and cap being emblematical, for it was not intended that he should wear either one or the other.
The procession then commenced making the entire circuit of the interior of the church. It was “a fine sight to see the King, and the handsome nobility of England (e quelli signori che sono belli homeni) in most pompous array with their silk gowns of various sorts, lined with sables and lynx's fur, and egret's down” (d'azineti, for garzeti?). This last lining, of “cineti,” was very expensive in England. Some of the nobles wore gowns of another sort, the material resembling silk, of two colours in chequers; others gowns slashed in their own fashion. All bore such massive gold chains that some might have served for fetters on a felon's ankles, and sufficed for his safe custody, so heavy were they, and of such immense value.
The King wore a gown of purple satin and gold in chequers, with gold flowers, and sleeves and a cape, and a jewelled collar worth a well full of gold (val an pozo d'oro), his cap being of purple velvet with two jewelled rosettes, and his doublet of gold brocade.
After the procession high mass commenced, and was performed with great pomp and with vocal and instrumental music, which lasted until 1 p.m., when the King quitted the church, accompanied by all the nobility and by the Venetian ambassador, returning to the palace in pairs as they came. The whole neighbourhood was crowded with spectators, estimated at 30,000, all anxious to see the King, the sword, and the cap.
On his Majesty's return to the episcopal palace Badoer was again told to dine with the King; so he remained, and met with the same cordial welcome as of yore, and such as was always given him personally. The Spanish ambassador had also been invited to dinner in like manner, and Badoer heard one of the grandees say to him, “Ambassador ! dine with us here for good fellowship;” but he declined, and some other noblemen said, “Ambassador! dine with us: it is late.” All proved vain, and he departed, out of shame, it was said, for the peace made by his King with France. Spain had erred in deceiving so powerful a monarch as King Henry, who was his Catholic Majesty's good son, but the blame should rest, not with the ambassadors, but with their masters.
After dinner Badoer presented to the King the Signory's letter, which his Majesty received as graciously as usual, and applied the term “father” to the ambassador, who on taking leave was accompanied by two noblemen down to the water's side, where his barge was, and he returned in good spirits to his house on the banks of the Thames.
Alexander Stuart, Duke of Albany, having been expelled Scotland by his brother James III, withdrew to France, where he died, (fn. 4) leaving a son, (John Stuart, Duke of Albany,) who was then endeavouring, under favour of Lewis XII., (fn. 5) to recover his duchy in Scotland, and seize the crown: but the Scots would by no means receive him. According to report, the Queen widow of Scotland had sent to her brother King Henry, telling him that blood would never turn to water: that she had a son, the rightful heir of the Scottish crown, who was crowned King on the death of his father, King Henry's brother-in-law; and in case the Duke of Albany should come to Scotland under French protection, she demanded succour from her brother, who was expected to grant it, as the supremacy of the French in Scotland would be contrary to his interests: the two kingdoms being envious of each other, and thus compelled to remain constantly armed; though the Scots are invariably defeated, because the English are brave men and experienced soldiers.
Arrival of an ambassador from the King of France, who was supposed to be making a demand for peace: others are exerting themselves to the same effect. Contradictory reports about the object of the mission, some saying that the envoy had brought money for the ransom of the Duke de Longueville, who was captured at Tournai a year ago, the crown of France, according to report, appertaining to him. The King had conceded the Duke great liberty, allowing him to go about London and the Court at his pleasure.
An ambassador from the Duke of Bavaria had lately made his appearance in London for the purpose, it was said, of offering troops to the King, who had presented the papal envoy who brought the sword and cap with a benefice yielding 2001. per annum, (fn. 6) so that his embassy had answered well to him.
On Tuesday the 13th June, the King caused a very fine ship of his to be blessed: the ship was in the Thames, 12 miles below London, whither he (the writer) went to see it, the King with a number of lords being present. Many masses were said on board, including high mass as sung for the benediction. The ship was very large, with five decks and seven [fortified] tops: the bronze and iron cannon on board, including great and small, exceeding 200 in number.
Letter dated London, 15th June 1514.
July 13. Mantuan Archives. 446. Giovanni Pietro de Bustis, an Italian in the service of Henry VIII., to the Marquis of Mantua.
The King was much gratified with the noble present, as the horses were not only very beautiful, but of surpassing excellence. The King holds the Marquis in great account. Told the King that the Marquis was the person who gave battle to King Charles: (fn. 7) whereupon the King said much in praise of the Marquis, and, addressing a number of his courtiers, stated the Marquis to be a most noble prince, adding, “See what a worthy and generous present he has sent me, and what men its bearers are.”
The King had paid all possible honour to Giovanni and Francesco d'Anone, his Majesty and the whole Court being astounded by the skill (virlà) of Giovanni d'Anone. The King was so much pleased with the present that the Marquis might rely on his support on all occasions.
London, 13th July 1514.
July 16. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 320. 447. Vetor Lippomano to—.
Dated Rome, 12th July.
News from France, that the King had flux and gout, but was better, and it was thought the agreement with England would take place. The Pope had received letters from the King of Spain, who thanked him for mediating between France and his son-in-law, the King of England.
The Cardinal of England (Bambridge) was very ill. A person who had arrived in Rome from Scotland, having come through France, said the agreement with England would assuredly be concluded.
July 16. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 320. 448. Venetian Ambassador in Rome to the State.
There were difficulties about the agreement with England.
Note by Sanuto, that he understood that the “Bailli” of Dijon, gentleman of the King of France, who was at Rome, and lodged id the Pope's palace, (though he had spoken neither with the Cardinal San Severino nor with the French ambassador,) had come to ascertain whether the Pope was content that the King of France should have the duchy of Milan, as the King of England had decided to act by what the Pope should say.
July 21. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 328. 449. The Same to the Same.
Dated 17th July.
Death of the Cardinal of England. No news from France, though the agreement was expected to arrive daily.
July 21. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 328. 450. Vetor Lippomano to—.
Dated Rome, 17th July.
Death of the Cardinal of England, a man 50 years old: very rich indeed: had left much ready money and plate: and made a will, having the Pope's permission thus to do. He had been the friend of the Signory. According to report, he had left property, including ready money, plate, and household furniture, to the amount of 110,000 ducats, of which (as heard by other letters) he bequeathed 20,000 ducats for the building of St. Peter's, and distributed the residue amongst his relations and servants. Was Archbishop of York; had benefices yielding——thousand ducats; had great power with the King of England, and was a man bold of speech. (fn. 8)
The bailiff of Dijon, Chamberlain of the King of France, who had arrived at Rome, remained in the Pope's palace three days before he spoke to the French ambassadors. He was come to hear from the Pope whether they had writen the truth, as to whether the Pope meant France to have the duchy of Milan. When the bailiff had ascertained the truth from the Pope, he conferred with the ambassadors. The Cardinal San Severino, aged 22 years, had been with the Venetian ambassador, stating he was commissioned by King Lewis to thank the Signory for their good offices to France. The King had also spoken in the same sense to Marco Dandolo, the ambassador in France. They were expecting news of the adjustment between England and France.
July 27. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 340. 451. Venetian Ambassador in Rome to the State.
Dated 23rd July.
They were expecting to hear of the conclusion of the agreement with England, news of which had not arrived, but the Pope felt perfectly sure it would come immediately.
July 30. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. p. 346. 452. The Same to the Same.
Dated 26th July.
Letters from the ambassador in France, date 16th July, and from Andrea Badoer in England, 1st July, state that the agreement had not yet been made, but was expected, and for its discussion the two crowns had apparently made truce for four months.
July 30. Sanuto Diaries, v. xviii. pp. 346, 347. 453. Vetor Lippomano to—.
Dated Rome, 26th July.
Reported receipt of letters from Spain, announcing that the King was going to a certain town to meet an ambassador from France, one from England, a third from the Emperor, and a fourth from the Archduke.
There were letters from France, dated the 16th July, from the Bishop of Tricarico, the Pope's nuncio, who had been to England about the agreement, and having obtained the King's final resolve, returned to France and announced it to King Lewis, who made answer that he would discuss it in council and give a reply.
The Pope said he at first believed this agreement would take place, but that he now perceives difficulty to exist, so that the affair trailed thus.


  • 1. This attack seems to have been made at the close of April, or early in May. See Mr. Brewer's Calendar, vol. i. p. 798.
  • 2. “Cordelle” (sic; codelle?) “che picava zoso.” The pendent ornaments “were not strings or lacets (cordelle), but little tails (coddle) of ermine. The description corresponds with the representation of English “caps of maintenance,” and a steel cap of this shape exists in the Correr Museum, but despoiled of its satin, pearls, and ermine.
  • 3. See Mr. Brewer's Calendar, vol. i. no. 5111, p. 811.
  • 4. In 1485.
  • 5. John Stuart, Duke of Albany, arrived at Dumbarton 18th May 1515. (See Burke, p. 781.)
  • 6. Church of Cottingham, York dioc. (See Mr. Brewer's Calendar, vol. i. no. 5198, June 29.)
  • 7. Battle of the Taro, July 5, 1495.
  • 8. “Et homo che li bastava l'animo parlar.”