Venice: June 1528

Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 4, 1527-1533. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1871.

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'Venice: June 1528', Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 4, 1527-1533, (London, 1871), pp. 140-158. British History Online [accessed 17 June 2024].

. "Venice: June 1528", in Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 4, 1527-1533, (London, 1871) 140-158. British History Online, accessed June 17, 2024,

. "Venice: June 1528", Calendar of State Papers Relating To English Affairs in the Archives of Venice, Volume 4, 1527-1533, (London, 1871). 140-158. British History Online. Web. 17 June 2024,

June 1528

June 1. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii.p. 48. 289. Sebastian Giustinian to the Stgnory.
The King quitted St. Germain to hunt at Fontainebleau. Having received the Signory's letters concerning the entry of the Lansquenets into the Veronese, went to him and announced the necessity for valid succour; so his Majesty determined to increase the force and send 10,000 Lansquenets and 3,000 Switzers to Italy, and these, if not needed in Lombardy, are to be sent to Mons. de Lautrec.
The English ambassador (fn. 1) spoke to the King recommending that no attack be made there [in Flanders?], but that the war be carried on [in Italy?], and for this purpose he [the King of England?] will pay 35,000 ducats monthly for four months, for his share of the troops.
Paris, 1st June. Registered by Sanuto, 10th June.
June 1. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii. p. 117. 118, 119. 290. Zuam Negro, Secretary of Navagero, Venetian Ambassador in Spain, to his father, Antonio Negro.
The general peace having been discussed without result, the ambassadors determined to take leave and return home. On the 21st they went in a body to the Emperor, each asking permission to depart. The Emperor answered them in general terms, saying he would confer with his Council and then give the reply. That same day he assembled the Council, and in the evening, when the ambassadors were about to sit down to supper, he sent Don Lopez Urtado, gentleman of his Majesty's chamber, to tell each of them, that as they had asked leave, he chose them to quit the court next morning, and go to the fortress of Pozza, until the arrival of his ambassadors resident in France, England, and Venice; so on the morrow, without having anything in readiness, they departed, leaving all their effects at Burgos, and going as they best might, accompanied, like malefactors, by 50 horse and 100 infantry of his Majesty's guard, lest any of them should escape. All the inhabitants of the city were at the windows and doors to behold them, and the populace not knowing the cause of their departure, and seeing them with so strong a guard, made remarks in their own fashion; one said, “That ambassador will be beheaded;” “This one will be hanged;” “The other will be thrown into a dungeon;” every one saying what he thought. Accompanied by this guard and its captain, and by the above-mentioned Lopez Urtado, they arrived that night at a distance of three leagues from Burgos, and on the 23rd were taken to Pozza, which is an extremely good (strong?) fortress, (fn. 2) but very rugged (aspra) and desolate, in the midst of bare mountains, where not for their demerits, but for having done good service, they remained four months in such straits, that the four months seemed to them four years. There all day and night at the gate of the fortress, and at the doors of the houses, constant guard was kept, so that they could not even send a servant out to gather a leaf of salad. The ambassadors who went to Pozza were two from France, together with the Secretary Bayard, the one from Venice, the Florentine, with a Secretary from the Duke of Milan. For the moment, the two ambassadors from England, and the Milanese, remained at Burgos, but they also after a few days were sent to do penance with the rest; nor was this enough, for shortly after arriving at Pozza, the whole party were deprived of such of their servants as were natives of the Emperor's towns and places, which to some, whose attendants were almost all Imperial subjects, was a grevious trouble, being in a place where none others could be got. They (the Venetians) were not much inconvenienced by this, having only two menials, one employed in the stable, and the other a page, who had been born in the Imperial dominions; but one of the English ambassadors, the Auditor Ghinucci, the Milanese ambassador, and the Florentine, suffered much from this privation, as well nigh all their servants were of the class forbidden to remain with the embassies.
Had never been so well nigh in despair as then, being unable to receive any advices or to write, and every day being told of a thousand catastrophes in Italy, which, although untrue, and believed by them to be false, were yet heart-rending. They remained all day long together loking and discussing a thousand topics, so as to pass the time and not despair utterly.
Now they are at liberty, and in a place where they can write and receive true news of what happens in the world, and not always with lies.
They left Pozza on the 19th ult., and got to Bayonne in a few days, the whole way being over rugged mountains, and the road very bad, and they were accompanied throughout by the aforesaid guard. Of all the ambassadors who were at Pozza, those of England alone remained behind, they having been made to go back to the Court, by command of the Emperor, all the others receiving permission to depart. (fn. 3)
On the 30th (May), the day of their arrival at Bayonne, they crossed the river which divides Spain from France, at Fonterabia, where the governor was very punctilious about the passage of the French ambassadors and the ambassador from the Emperor, who was on the other side of the river, so that to settle the matter, the French ambassador, the President of Bordeaux, and the Secretary Bayard had to cross by signal from one side at the same time as the Spanish ambassador crossed from the other, the Bishop of Tarbes, and the Venetian and Milanese ambassadors remaining at the mercy of the Governor of Fonterabia, until the two boats had crossed, whereupon the Bishop of Tarbes embarked, nor would the governor allow the Venetian and Milanese ambassadors to accompany him, though he did give leave to him (Negro) and to the Milanese secretary, who was also there, and immediately afterwards he sent the other two ambassadors across.
When they reached the other side of the river, they found the brother of the Bishop of Tarbes, who had come there with a number of French noblemen and knights to receive and meet his brother and all the other ambassadors with some 1,000 infantry placed in ambush, so that had any outrage been offered to the ambassadors, the soldiery might have remedied it.
Much time was lost in these ceremonies, and in the passage of the river, so that before arriving at St. Jean de Luz, two leagues within the French frontier (having also in the morning travelled four leagues from Ernani to Fonterabia), it was 1 p.m. There, being fatigued by the long journey and bad road, as also by the great dispute and punctiliousness on the part of the Spaniards in the act of crossing, the whole party dined sumptuously; the Bishop of Aire, brother of the Bishop of Tarbes, having prepared a stately banquet. After dinner they departed immediately for Bayonne, on entering which city great honour was done them, and there were so many discharges of cannon, that they could not see one another for the smoke. During the five leagues' journey from the passage of the river to Bayonne, they were accompanied the whole way by a number of noblemen on horseback, and by the aforesaid 1,000 territorial militia. They were lodged in the best houses in the town, and much courted and well greeted, so that having in one day passed from so much misery to an equal amount of well being, it seemed very strange to them, most especially as since their imprisonment in Spain, they had always been accustomed to hardships; so they thank God for having escaped from the hands of the Judeans, and come into the land of promise. (fn. 4) They will remain two or three days at Bayonne, to provide themselves with a variety of necessaries and rest awhile, and then they will proceed to the Court.
Bayonne, 1st June. Registered by Sanuto, 23rd June.
June 1. Navagero Despatches, Cicogna copy, in the Correr Museum. 291. Andrea Navagero to the Signory.
When the French ambassadors (sic), (fn. 5) the ambassador from Florence, and himself were sent to Pozza, each was allowed to write an open letter. Acquainted the Signory with what had befallen him, and demanded permission for the Imperial ambassador at Venice to depart. This alone he was permitted and desired to write, and, through the Venetian ambassador in France, understood his letter reached its destination.
Subsequently was forbidden to write, and every precaution was taken to prevent the transmission of any letter to France or elsewhere, and for four months all the ambassadors were under the closest custody.
Secretary Bayard at length reached Burgos, with his King's ultimatum; and the French and English ambassadors, having first discussed the whole affair together, informed the Emperor that of the five points in dispute the most Christian King conceded four, viz., the amount of money and mode of its payment; the surrender of Genoa, Asti, and Hesdin; the loan of the fleet for three months, that the Emperor might go into Italy for his coronation; and the payment of an equivalent for the county of Charlerois.
The whole difficulty consisted in the fifth point, concerning the duchy of Milan; France and England not choosing to allow of its being in other hands than those of the Duke Francesco. This much however the ambassadors did not say, but besought (supplicarono) the Emperor, as the other points were conceded, that he should grant their sovereigns what they requested. The Emperor said that he would consider the whole case and reply, but that with regard to the duchy of Milan, its surrender by him would be attributed to fear; that it was not fair for the King of France to prevent him from punishing his vassals; that he would do justice by the Duke of Milan, but would not consent to give him the duchy under compulsion and by force; that if the King of France acted as they proposed respecting the four points he would do what was fair, though the fifth point was unfair; but that nevertheless he would reply more particularly on a future occasion.
This reply was delayed for many days; the general opinion in the meanwhile being, that the whole difficulty consisted in the duchy of Milan, and that if means were not found for that, there would be none whereby to effect the peace. Gattinara, on the contrary, said to him (Navagero) that he deceived himself if he believed that the chief obstacle was the duchy of Milan; that the Emperor did not desire what belonged to others, but that he considered it unjust for the most Christian King, besides non-observance of what ho had promised, to compel the Emperor to leave that duchy to the Duke; that were the Emperor to do anything with regard to this matter it would not be from fear, nor from threats of war, but from love and courtesy, which for the moment he would not demonstrate towards the King of France, (fn. 6) though he would do what he could to satisfy Italy.
Reported accordingly to all the ambassadors, in the house of Ghinucci, everything that had been said to him by the Chancellor. Although many of them had contradictory opinions about details, they agreed unanimously not to commence any negotiation until a reply had been given to the French ambassadors.
The Emperor's ultimatum being delayed for many days, the confederate ambassadors agreed in the meanwhile, to elicit what they could from the Imperial ministers.
Saw them all several times. Found that the chief obstacle to peace was Gattinara, whose hatred of the King of France was held by him in greater account than his master's interests, and the common weal of Christendom.
The Emperor's confessor appeared to him very obstinate, though occasionally in certain matters he showed himself amenable to reason, evincing however great hatred to France.
Whenever the Secretary Aleman spoke to him (Navagero) he urged the desertion of France by Venice, and that she should ally herself with the Emperor, who would do whatever the Signory wished. The Chancellor and the Confessor also tempted him occasionally in like manner, but more delicately and less openly. Answered them all consistently with his duty (secondo che era il debito mio), and with what he knew to be the intention of the Signory.
The person who was best disposed towards peace, and who seemed most to regret its non-conclusion, was Don Juan Manuel, who told him that he had suggested the separate negotiation with the Signory, for whose gratification he thought the Emperor would cede the Milanese, whereas on no account soever would he do so for the King of France.
At length, as a good commencement for the new year, the French ambassadors were sent for on the 1st of January to receive the reply from the Council, and as it was in writing, and they alone were summoned and not in association with the English ambassadors, as fitting, they refused acceptance of the document unless it were addressed both to French and English. The Chancellor replied that the English would be answered subsequently, that they were not parties, but mediators, which the French denied, and not choosing to receive the reply separately, the English ambassadors were sent for to hear from them if they chose to receive the reply as party and confederate with France, or in any other manner. They demanded it conjointly with France, and thus was it given, the ambassadors of the two Kings being answered in common.
The conclusion was that of the four points above mentioned the Emperor accepted the three first. The fourth, concerning the surrender of Genoa and other places, and the recall of the army from Italy, he also accepted conditionally, thus, that these acts were to precede the release of the French Princes.
Touching the Duke of Milan, the Emperor declared his willingness to do him justice, but with certain conditions which entirely annulled the jurisdiction claimed by the King of France over the duchy, and bound the Duke to the Imperial fief more than ever. With regard to pardoning and leaving him in possession at the suit of France and England, he refused to do so, as it would seem compulsory and not voluntary. He offered, however, on the conclusion of the peace, before it took effect, and before the release of the French Princes, to dispose of the duchy in such wise as to convince everybody that he never allowed himself to be ruled by avarice, or the wish for territorial possession, and that Italy would remain satisfied and at peace, so that there would be no cause for war.
The French and English ambassadors discussed this reply at great length, but they made no communication whatever to their Italian colleagues until the following day.
In the meanwhile the Chancellor Gattinara sent for him (Navagero). He announced the Emperor's good will towards Venice, and by his Majesty's command read to him the answer given to the French and English ambassadors, from suspicion that they would not show it to him, on account of the paragraph demonstrating the Emperor's good will towards Italy, which does not please them. Replied that doubtless the French ambassadors would communicate everything to him, as they always had done, but that he thanked the Emperor infinitely for his good will towards the Signory, and for the account in which his Majesty held him for the Signory's sake. The Chancellor read the whole reply, which was in French, and as it contained some words of doubtful meaning, and many things which it was of importance to state distinctly, did not let anything pass without full explanation, which the Chancellor gave very willingly.
Then went to dine with the Bishop of Tarbes, and found that a general meeting of all the ambassadors had been arranged, at which it was proposed to take leave of the Emperor and declare war; they having interpreted many passages of the reply in a sense which appeared to them the worst possible. Acquainted them with what had passed between him and the Chancellor, and how Gattinara had explained the doubtful passages. Thereupon, first of all Ghinucci and then all the other ambassadors, including himself, determined to return to the Emperor, and tell him they had received the reply, in which there were some equivocal paragraphs.
Thus did they, and his Majesty gave the same explanation as received by him (Navagero) from the Chancellor. Concerning the surrender of Genoa, and the recall of the army before the release of the French Princes, they found the Emperor resolute; so that this was the chief difficulty with regard to the acceptance of the peace by France. As touching the duchy of Milan, although the Emperor did not expressly say that he would do what was required of him, yet by saying that he would satisfy Italy—and since Italy would not be satisfied otherwise than by his leaving the duchy to the Duke—it seemed that at last he would do what was wished.
Many days were passed in the discussion of these difficulties. The Imperialists said it was not fair for the Emperor to trust the most Christian King after having been once deceived by him, but that the most Christian King might trust the Emperor, who had never broken his word; and they inquired what need the French had for an army in Italy, if immediately on the signature of the peace, before any further ratification of it, the Emperor offered to leave Italy content and quiet. They said, in short, that a person once deceived must beware of being duped a second time.
The French, on the other hand, said that their King had not failed to do all that he could, nor was it in his power to do more. That with regard to trusting the Emperor, he did trust him in great part, but did not consider it fair to desert the confederates by recalling his army and leaving Italy at the mercy of the Spaniards. That the Emperor might be very sure of him, the King of England having pledged himself for France, but that his most Christian Majesty had no security from the Emperor. That King Francis would place in the hands of the King of England hostages, and 200,000 ducats, to be forfeited to the Emperor should the army not be recalled at the appointed time, immediately after the release of the French Princes.
All this was freely promised by the English ambassadors in the name of their King, who being always styled kinsman (parente) by the Emperor, and considered a friend and mediator, it did not seem that such security could be fairly rejected.
After much debate the Emperor went so far as to tell the French ambassadors that when the most Christian King recalled his army, he, the Emperor, would simultaneously withdraw the Imperial forces from Italy; and on being told that under pretence of the kingdom of Naples he would leave his army there, and that it would not be out of Italy, he replied that he would not remove his men-at-arms from the kingdom of Naples, but that he was willing to remove the infantry, and would so arrange that on the departure of the French, they might quit Lombardy, and subsequently Italy; and he moreover offered to give security to the King of France for the performance of this promise. He would make no further concession, nor ever consent to the release in the first place of the French Princes, saying always that he would not trust the King of France.
The matter being thus complicated, and many plans being discussed, the Chancellor (Gattinara) said he had discovered a remedy for everything, and that thereby peace would be made. That on the Sunday of the Epiphany he had a vision of this device (venne in visione questa cosa), which would resemble the star, whereby on that day the Magi were guided on the straight road; and thus would this contrivance lead the Kings and Princes of Christendom to peace. All men marvelled what grand project this could be, put forward by so great a personage as the Chancellor Gattinara, and for some days the whole Court considered the affair settled, and the peace concluded. At length he communicated his scheme to the French ambassadors in writing, and it reduced itself to this, that in the Emperor's name he offered the same security for the observance of his promise as that proposed by his most Christian Majesty to the Emperor, namely, the King of England. This seemed a very feeble and indifferent alternative, as he offered what did not depend upon himself, nor did he know whether the King of England was content to promise for the Emperor or not; whereas the English ambassadors had already been commissioned by their King to pledge him and his realms to the Emperor for whatever the King of France promised, to which effect they exhibited to the Emperor their commission; whilst on the contrary they said they were not authorized to promise for the Emperor, nor did they know the will of their King in this matter. In reply to the inquiry, as to what was to be done should the King of England refuse his guarantee, the Imperialists answered that the affair would be in the same state as before, which result seemed very unfitting (fn. 7) after the suspension of all proceedings until the return of the courier from England.
Thereupon the peace seemed hopeless, notwithstanding which a variety of agreements were proposed. Ghinucci said that the French would consent to take the security of the King of England, should he choose to give it, but that in case of refusal, the Emperor be bound to accept the terms proposed by the confederates. To this the Imperialists would not listen. Others proposed that the security held by the Emperor from France should be divided, that the Dauphin should be given up for a sum of money, the other being consigned to the King of England, together with other hostages from amongst the chief personages in France, to remain in his hands until the execution of the rest of the agreement, hostages being also given to the Emperor; or they would even leave the Duke of Orleans with him, he (the Emperor) giving hostages to France until the completion of what remained for settlement.
Many other plans for the division of this security, in the persons of the French Princes, were discussed, and very fair remedies devised for all the difficulties.
First of all, the Nuncio undertook to speak on this subject, as a person who professes to be no less the servant of the Pope than of the Emperor, who places great trust in him; but either he did not well comprehend the proposal made to him, or he was too partial, for nothing whatever resulted from his mediation, nor was it possible to effect an adjustment through other channels.
Don Juan Emanuel and the Nuncio spoke to him (Navagero) about a variety of measures.
To place Genoa and other cities in the hands of a third person, approved by the Emperor; to give Mons. de Lautrec as hostage in the Castle of Milan; to recall the army; to refer all remaining difficulties to the Pope, he being first set at liberty; that the Venetian Signory should promise for France, as the Emperor would certainly accept such security. Part of these terms seemed unfair, and part were not proposed. It remained but to write back to France, or to take leave and declare war; but the French ambassadors refused to hear a word about writing any more, as their King had charged them not to do so, save with the announcement of the conclusion of the peace, or of the proclamation of war, which they therefore determined to make after having first taken leave. Before doing so, however, they went moreover to Madame Eleanor, the Queen of France, to see if she could prevail upon her brother, as everything else was settled, to make this concession for the sake of placing the French crown on her head. This likewise produced no effect. The Queen, whose goodness and coldness were on a par, had such respect for her brother that she knew not how to do what was necessary, though he (Navagero) felt certain that her disposition was excellent (”ehe il desiderio son certo die non li mancò”). All means having been tried, the French ambassadors proposed to their colleagues to take leave, and asked them their intentions. The English ambassadors said they would do the like. He (Navagero) followed their example, saying that the Signory was quite determined to be always of the same mind as the most Christian King and the King of England. The ambassador from Florence said that although he had no especial commission from the Florentine Signory in this matter, he would accompany his colleagues whenever they pleased.
The English ambassadors [Lee and Ghinucci] were of opinion that to avoid irritating the Emperor, the Milanese ambassador should not present himself with the others, but go to the Emperor subsequently alone, so that, should the negotiation for peace be resumed, his Majesty might continue of the same mind towards the Duke as lately evinced by him. Out of regard for Lee and Ghinucci this was agreed to, and thus, with the exception of the Milanese, the ambassadors sent in a body to demand audience, which the Emperor granted immediately, and they went to him on the 21st of January. The Bishop of Tarbes was spokesman for all of them, and in the best form he could, asked leave to depart. The Emperor replied graciously, that he in like manner had ambassadors with many of the confederates, nor was it fair that he should allow their ambassadors to quit his Court, whilst those whom he had accredited to them should remain where they were; that he would write to his ambassadors, and on hearing of their departure would allow them, the ambassadors of the confederates, to quit Spain; and that in the meanwhile he would send to tell them what they were to do. The Bishop of Tarbes said that the French ambassador was the President, (fn. 8) and that with him his Majesty might do as he pleased; but that he (the Bishop) and the Secretary Bayard came not as ambassadors, but with an Imperial safeconduct, to negotiate this especial business, and that the term of the safeconduct would not expire for eight days. The Emperor replied that he would satisfy the Bishop.
Had not intended to say anything, but perceiving that the President, and Ghinucci and Lee, all spoke to the Emperor aside, he likewise approached him, and said that if his Majesty purposed writing to Venice and waiting a reply, it would require much time, and that he requested leave to depart with the French ambassadors. That he regretted going away in this fashion, but that it was impossible for him to do otherwise. That the Signory could not but keep faith with the confederates, nor could he disobey the orders of the State, though he felt sure that what the Signory did was not from hatred or ill-will to his Majesty, but first of all for self-defence, and secondly, in observance of their obligations. That he did not despair of peace, and trusted that it would be effected by the hand of the Almighty when mankind expected it the least. With regard to big departure, the Emperor replied that he would try and satisfy him; and concerning the rest of the business, that he hoped he would tell the whole truth to the Signory, who, being prudent and sage, as those madmen (estos desvariados) were so desirous of war, should let them wage it, the Republic looking on at their breaking each other's heads (e vedere che si rompessero la testa fra loro).
With these replies, the ambassadors took leave of the Emperor. On that same evening Lopez Hurtado went to the French and Florentine ambassadors, and to him (Navagero), who was thus informed that the Emperor gave them conditional permission to depart, they remaining at Pozza eight leagues from Burgos, until he received news of his own ambassadors; that he (Navagero) and his colleagues would be well treated in every respect; that he (Hurtado) would keep them company, and that on the morrow they were to depart; each being allowed to write an open letter from Pozza, demanding the despatch of the Imperial ambassadors, so that the ambassadors of the confederates might be enabled speedily to return home; that these letters would be transmitted by the Emperor, and that until the reply arrived, the ambassadors were to be at ease, and not trouble themselves about anything.
Being compelled to obey these commands, the French ambassadors, the Florentine, and himself departed all together on the 22nd January, in the midst of 40 infantry and 30 horse of the Imperial guard, being taken through Burgos like prisoners, and all their servants sent in advance, so that they could speak to no one. Some of the attendants who remained behind for part of the baggage were placed under custody of soldiers of the guard, who never quitted them until they reached Pozza. The night of the day on which they took leave of the Emperor at Burgos, the doors of all their houses were guarded, and yet stricter was the watch kept over them at Pozza.
The English ambassadors and the Milanese remained for the moment at Burgos.
On the morning of the 22nd [January], before the departure of the ambassadors, the French and English heralds declared war to the Emperor. What they said, the form adopted by them, and the Emperor's replies, were immediately translated into Spanish and printed with the title,
“El desafio de Francia y Inglaterra al Emperador.”
Sends a copy of it to the Signory, believing that the document, has not yet reached Italy. The Signory will thereby perceive the whole, and will be surprised at much insolent language which it contains, especially against Cardinal Wolsey. (fn. 9)
Compares his four months stay at Pozza to purgatory.
Lee and Ghinucci and the Milanese ambassador arrived at Pozza a month later, on the Emperor's departure from Burgos; whereupon the French ambassadors were sent to a fortified castle belonging to the [feudal] Lord of Pozza [Juan de Rojas], to be under closer custody. Some of the guards always slept in the antechamber of the Bishop of Tarbes, and remained during the day, to watch the ambassadors.
The Emperor having at length heard that his ambassador in France was at a short distance from Bayonne, sent a gentleman to Pozza, to take the French ambassadors, with their guards, to Fonterabia, there to exchange them for the Imperial ambassador.
His Majesty gave orders for the English ambassadors to go to the Court, or where they pleased, but under promise that neither they nor any of their attendants should depart without his leave. The Comendador Figueroa remained in charge of them, (fn. 10) it being said that the Emperor acted thus because the like had been done in England to his ambassador, whose departure thence was to precede that of Lee and Ghinucci from Spain.
Being set at liberty, quitted Pozza for Fonterabia, with the French and Florentine ambassadors, on the 19th May (1528). At Fonterabia (fn. 11) found a French herald, the bearer of a challenge from the most Christian King to the Emperor. Subsequently at Burgos, when war was proclaimed, the Emperor desired the French herald to tell his King he supposed the latter had not heard what he had said to the French ambassador, the President, at Granada, or King Francis would have answered him; wherefore the Emperor demanded a reply. The most Christian King, having heard the message (which purported that the Emperor would prove to him, man to man, that he had not kept the promise made to the Emperor at Madrid), now replies by his herald and accepts the combat, telling the Emperor to give him a free field, and that being the person challenged, he will come with such arms as shall seem fit to him.
Does not know how these projects can be realised, but they are current, and will furnish the world with a topic for a few days.
The President [Calvimont] being at Pozza, on hearing what the Emperor had said to the herald about the words uttered at Granada, wrote to the Emperor that at the time, he did not communicate them to his King, because they appeared to him at variance with the negotiations for peace which were then being commenced; but as the Emperor now chose the message to be delivered, the President asked his permission to write it to his King, and told the Emperor the precise words which he remembered, requesting the Emperor, should they not be those uttered by him (and the President had in fact not remembered them correctly), to say himself what they were; whereupon the Emperor wrote a letter signed with his own hand, repeating not only the words in question, but others much stronger. The most Christian King has not yet received this letter; when he does, he will be yet more exasperated, and the passes between Spain and France will be daily frequented by heralds. Should it be possible to conclude this affair, it would be a rare sight to witness a duel between two such sovereigns.
At Bayonne met one Silvestro Dario, a Lucchese, sent by Cardinal Wolsey to Spain, with an envoy (un homo) from the Lady Margaret, to see whether at her request it would be possible to induce the Emperor to make peace. Dario was awaiting a safe-conduct, for which he had sent to the Emperor, and expressed strong hopes of producing some good effect.
Bayonne, 1st June 1528.
June 7. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 4, St. Mark's Library. 292. Gasparo Contarini, Venetian Ambassador with the Pope, to the Signory.
Conversed with Cardinal Farnese, appointed Governor of Rome in lieu of Cardinal Campeggio, named Legate in England. Viterbo, 7th June.
[Italian, 8½ pages]
June 7. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 5, St. Mark's Library. 293. The Same to the Same.
Having closed the accompanying letter, received a message from the Pope, desiring his attendance between 5 and 6 p.m. (fn. 12) Found him in his chamber with the ambassadors of France, England, and Milan. The Cardinals Farnese and Ridolfi were also present. The Pope complained of the occupation by the Venetians of Ravenna and Cervia, and requested the allied powers to obtain their restitution. The French ambassador, Viscount de Turenne, replied that his King waged war in Italy without any profit for himself, but for all to recover their own, and he believed the Signory of Venice was of the same mind, and would satisfy his Holiness.
The English ambassador, Dr. Stephen [Gardyner], then said, in very strong language (parole molto efficace), that it was the firm intention of his King that those cities should be restored, and laid much stress on the fact that at the commencement, the Venetian ambassadors in France and England. gave it to be understood that the Signory had taken them in trust for the Church.
Knelt before the Pope, and said that had he known how to execute the commission received from the Signory aright, this convocation of ambassadors would have been unnecessary; for that, although the State had great confidence in the most Christian King and in the English King, yet the Republic's confidence in his Holiness was such that they had not employed any other mediator than himself, he having yesterday stated the Signory's claims upon Ravenna and Cervia, and then besought the Pope that as by the favour of so many of his predecessors the Republic had possessed those cities for centuries, so he should consent to the Signory's possession of them; adding, he knew not of what particular [grievance] his Holiness could complain hitherto. The Pope said he made no complaint, but refused positively to grant the Republic's demand. Rejoined that the Signory had such confidence in his Holiness' wisdom and goodness as to expect he would satisfy them; whereupon the Pope answered,—“I said to you, and now repeat, that I choose no other mode, save that you restore those cities to me.” Replied, “To this your Holiness' reply, which the Senate did not anticipate, I can give no answer, from lack of any commission, but will write for instructions; though in the meanwhile, before receiving them, I will observe that this assembly of ambassadors appeared to me unnecessary.” The Pope said he had thought fit to make the communication that his will might be know to all the Powers; and the Milanese ambassador offered the assistance of his Duke; Cardinal Farnese urging the demand on behalf of the College of Cardinals. The Pope, in conclusion, desired him (Contarini) to obtain an immediate and positive reply, either yes or no.
When the Pope dismissed the assembly, the French ambassadors went to sup with Cardinal Ridolfi. Proceeded to the residence of Gardyner, who was much irritated about the business. Told him how undesirable it was to press the matter thus, as it would cause great suspicion to the Duke of Ferrara and the Florentines, to whose dominions the Pope chiefly aspired, most especially now that the Imperial army is powerful in Lombardy. To this Gardyner would not listen, disparaging the forces of those powers; and then said, “The Duke of Ferrara has his son in France.” Replied, “That is nothing; the King of France likewise has two sons in Spain, and yet makes war.” Gardyner rejoined, “By war the King of France hopes to recover them;” and was answered, “The Emperor can give similar hope, and yet greater, to the Duke of Ferrara, having in his hands the sons of the King of France.”
Viterbo, 7th June.
[Italian, 3¾ pages.]
June 8. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 6, St. Mark's Library. 294. The Same to the Same.
Went to the French ambassadors about the affair of Ravenna and Cervia, and the obstinacy of the Pope with regard to the restitution of those places. Alluded to the eternal obligation of the Republic to their King. Said that the State would always acknowledge the recovery of those towns as proceeding from him, and that to moot their surrender to the Pope at the present moment would alarm the Duke of Ferrara and the Florentines; besides which the aggrandizement of the Pope might be injurious as well as unprofitable.
The ambassadors seemed little acquainted with the French King's intention, and complained that the English ambassador [Prothonotary Casal] resident in Venice wrote to Viterbo, that he had been told by Doge Griti that the most Christian King did not choose Ravenna and Cervia to be restored, and therefore the State did not surrender. Assured them that Prothonotary Casal had written a falsehood, as the intention of the King to favour the Signory was a close secret, which no member of the privy council could divulge under pain of death and confiscation [of property]. The ambassadors declared the Pope was immoveable in this matter, and hinted that Ravenna and Cervia should be placed as a deposit in the hands of their King. Declined this proposal and stated the suspicion which any change would cause to the Florentines and to Ferrara.
On quitting the French ambassadors, visited those of England. Sir Gregory Casal was not at home, and he could only see Dr. Stephen [Gardyner], who urged the restitution on which the Pope insists. Gardyner had received letters from England, dated 24th May, and from France, the 30th, that a truce between Flanders, and France and England, was on the point of conclusion; also that the most Christian King had pressed the ambassador Giustinian about the restitution of Ravenna and Cervia.
Viterbo, 8th June.
[Italian, 1½ page.]
June 8. Deliberazioni Senato (Secreta), Filza 8. 295. The Doge and Senate to Sebastian Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France.
The Bishop of Avranches (fn. 13) communicated a letter received from the most Christian King about Ravenna and Cervia, to the effect that the Signory had told the English ambassador, that his Majesty does not choose them to surrender (non vuol che noi habiamo a restituir) Ravenna and Cervia, and that he would combine with the King of England not to oppose them. To assure his Majesty that such words were not uttered, although their whole reliance in this business rests on what was said to the Venetian ambassador by the most Christian King and “Madame,” his mother, and lately by the Lord Steward.
June 12. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii. p. 53. 296. Audience in the College Hall.
The English ambassador [Prothonotary Casal] presented himself. He had letters from Viterbo, dated the 7th. He produced one from his brother, the English ambassador, Sir Gregory, who gives the same account as received from the Signory's ambassador about Ravenna and Cervia. Sir Gregory uses his good offices, but the Pope chooses to have the towns.
June 13. Deliberazioni Senato (Secreta), Filza 8. 297. The Doge and Senate to Sebastian Giustinian, Venetian Ambassador in France.
Their ambassador to the Pope had been twice with his Holiness explaining the Signory's reasons, according to enclosed copy, and in conformity with what was told them by the ambassadors of France and England resident in Venice. The Pope's replies were contrary to their expectations, and harsh.
June 14. Lettere del Collegio (Secreta), File 11. 298. The Doge and College to Marc' Antonio Venier, Venetian Ambassador in England.
Have received letters from their ambassador, announcing his conference with the Pope, whose reply causes them regret; but still hope that after considering the Signory's reasons, according to enclosed copy, to be communicated in conversation to the King and Cardinal, his Holiness will do what is just, for the following reasons. The Republic succoured and defended Bologna and other cities of Romagna, which would otherwise have fallen into the hands of the Imperialists. They have on every occasion employed all their power for the benefit of the Apostolic See, at a cost of two millions and a half of gold, which outlay they are yet continuing, and they deserve favour from the Pope. If for so many consecutive years with the consent of former Popes they held Ravenna and Cervia (the former city having been ceded them upwards of a century ago by the late Lord Obizzo da Polenta, 400 years having then elapsed since its occupation by the Popes; whilst Cervia passed to the Republic by the will of the Lord Domenico Malatesta, on condition of their paying legacies ad pias causas, on which account they have disbursed, and continue disbursing, considerable sums), they ought not to receive less from the [present] Pope, with whom they are so closely allied. Are certain this is well known to the King and Cardinal, who are aware whether the Signory has greatly benefited the undertaking. The State hopes therefore that the King and Cardinal will not fail to assist the Signory, so that the Pope may be pacified.
The enemy's re-enforcements from Germany have entered Peschiera, plundered some of the Signory's places on the Lake of Garda, traversed the Brescian territory and the Oglio, and entered the Bergamasque to attack Bergamo; Antonio da Leva having also crossed the Adda with part of the Milanese garrison to join them. The Signory having put 7,500 infantry into Bergamo, the enemy retreated towards the Ghiara d'Adda, in the direction of Cremona; but on their passing the Po, Antonio da Leva, with his own forces and part of those lately arrived from Germany, recrossed the Adda, and is supposed to be marching on Genoa. The city of Naples was closely besieged by Mons. de Lautrec. The Venetian fleet was employed by him to blockade the city.
The Signory is much inconvenienced by its unbearable expenditure, as follows:—60,000 ducats monthly for 17,000 infantry; 15,000 ducats per quarter (per quartier) for 800 men-at-arms, which, including the Captain General's board, form 20,000 ducats per quarter. The cost of the Lansquenets and Switzers with M. de Lautrec amounts to 20,252 ducats. The Lansquenets and other troops in the Republic's pay at Naples cost 10,000 ducats per month, besides the cost of the fleet and very many other extraordinary expenses, including that of 5,000 Lansquenets whom the most Christian King is sending them, for whose first payment they remitted 18,000 crowns to Lyons. Are sending a like sum to Ivrea for the second payment, and in a few days must provide for the third; having also been compelled to assist the Duke of Milan with 26,000 crowns.
To acquaint the King and Cardinal in the Signory's name with this heavy expenditure, and exhort them to aid the undertaking, to the glory of the King of England, in which Cardinal Wolsey will participate.
June 14. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 8, St. Mark's Library. 299. Gasparo Contarini, Venetian Ambassador with the Pope, to the Signory.
The departure of the French Ambassador, the Viscount of Turenne, on his way to the Signory was most secret. The English ambassador, Dr. Stephen [Gardyner] is also going to Venice, and merely awaited the arrival of Cardinal Campeggio, which took place this day, he being on his road to England as Legate; the Pope having charged him and Cardinal Wolsey to take cognizance of the suit for the dispensation of the King's marriage (commessa la cognitions della causa della dispensa del matrimonio del Re).
Dr. Stephen is very warm in doing his utmost that Ravenna and Cervia be restored to the Pope.
Viterbo, 14th June.
[Italian, 2¼ pages.]
June 15. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii. pp. 205, 206. 300. Truce between England, France, and Charles V.
Proclamation of the eight months truce between France, England, and the Emperor, with especial mention of the Archduchess Margaret, and the herring fishery.
No date either at commencement or close, but in the text it is stated that the truce is to commence on the 15th June, while hostilities should still continue between England and Spain.
Registered by Sanuto, 16th July.
June 16. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 9, St. Mark's Library. 301. Gasparo Contarini to the Signory.
Yesterday visited Cardinal Campeggio, who, when talking about his departure for England, said they had written to Genoa for two galleys to be sent to one of the harbours nearest Viterbo, for his conveyance to Marseilles; so he is awaiting a reply. He has endeavoured to make this arrangement because, in addition to the many inconveniences to which a land journey would subject him, he does not know how he could escape the Imperialists, going as he is to England for the purpose announced; general belief anticipating a result which will perhaps not be verified.
The Bishop of Scardona said all “these” Cardinals are hostile to the Republic, and that he had seen letters from England that the King is negotiating peace between the Emperor and France, to the detriment of Venice. Attaches small importance to his words.
Conversed this morning with the English ambassador, Dr. Stephen, who said he had heard from the Bishop of Bath in France that he was to go to Venice with the Viscount of Turenne, to urge the Signory to restore Cervia and Ravenna to the Pope; he therefore proposed going, but doubted finding the Viscount there. Adroitly endeavoured to dissuade him from taking the journey.
Spoke also with Sir Gregory Casal, showing him how disadvantageous for the common cause it was (at the present moment) to molest the Signory, on whose shoulders the whole burden of the war now rested. Casal promised to influence Gardyner for Venice, but said the Pope was urging him to the contrary.
The Pope had told him that a truce was being negotiated with Flanders, and that the King of England would contribute from 30,000 to 40,000 crowns per month for the Italian expedition.
The Pope also mentioned the dispensation of the marriage demanded by the King of England, discussing the arguments pro and con, and said that for this business he had destined Cardinal Campeggio, who was a good jurist, had experience of England, and was in the Emperor's confidence, and that he would perhaps make the English King understand the truth, and effect some adjustment. (fn. 14)
Viterbo, 16th June.
[Italian, 4¼ pages.]
June 17. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 10, St. Mark's Library. 302. The Same to the Same.
The English ambassador, Dr. Stephen, proceeds to Venice. The Archbishop of Capua [Nicholas Schomberg] counsels the Pope to be neutral.
Viterbo, 17th June.
[Italian, ½ page.]
June 17. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii. p. 81. 303. Audience in the College Hall.
The English ambassador had audience of the College. He discussed current events, and then departed.
June 20. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii. p. 98. 304. Audience in the College Hall.
The English ambassador came into the College on private business of an Englishman, creditor of Zuan Contarini the Exorcist (cazadiavoli), (who is going as Proveditor of the fleet,) for 300 ducats on a bill of exchange. An order was issued for Contarini to appear before the College.
June 20. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii. p. 180. 305. Marco Antonio Venier to the Signory.
The King has made truce for a year with Flanders. London, 20th June. Registered by Sanuto, 8th July.
June 22. Deliberazioni Senato (Secreta), Filza 8. 306. Reply of the Senate to the French Ambassadors, the Viscount of Turenne and the Bishop of Avranches.
On receiving the Pope's reply, wrote to the Signory's ambassadors in France and England, to acquaint their Majesties with the Republic's reasons. Trust they will induce the Pope to make some fair adjustment.
Ayes, 104.
June 22. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 11, St. Mark's Library. 307. Gasparo Contarini to the Signory.
Consigned his last letters of the 17th to Dr. Stephen, who at length determined to go to Venice. Of those letters he (Contarini) now sends duplicates.
Viterbo, 17th June.
[Italian, ½ page.]
June 23. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 12, St. Mark's Library. 308. The Same to the Same.
Sir Gregory Casal has shown him a letter from Andrea Doria, dated the 20th, apologizing for his inability to accommodate Cardinal Campeggio with the two galleys for his voyage to Marseilles, as he had only one with him, and could not dispose of the one belonging to the most Christian King as all were under the command of Mons. de Barbesieux; but stating that in the middle of next month Count Filippino Doria was to return with his eight galleys, of which the Cardinal might then avail himself. The paragraph was so worded as to show that Andrea Doria is dissatisfied with the most Christian King; so Sir Gregory Casal strongly suspects that he will take service with the Imperialists, or at the least with the Pope, which would be inopportune for the present need.
Viterbo, 23rd June.
[Italian, 1½ page.]
June 23. Original Letter Book, Letter no. 13, St. Mark's Library. 309. The Same to the Council of Ten.
Sir Gregory Casal told him a great rascal, (fn. 15) Sigismund of Ferrara, in the service of Georgio Fronsperg, was coming to speak to the Pope in the name of the Imperialists now at Monte Fiascone, and that it would be well (as his road lay through the duchy of Urbino) to write to the Duchess to seize him on the way. This morning Casal, the French secretary, and himself spoke to the agent from Urbino, who promised to write to the Duchess. Having written his letter, finds Sigismund of Ferrara has arrived at Viterbo; so the trouble taken about him has proved vain.
Viterbo, 23rd June.
[Italian, 1 page.]
June 24. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii. p. 120. 310. Note by Sanuto.
Last evening an ambassador from the King of England, named Doctor Stephen [Gardyner], an Englishman, who was at Viterbo with the Pope with Sir Gregory Casal, arrived at Venice. He came riding post. He was lodged in Cà Dandolo at the Ponte delta Paglia, with the other English ambassador, Prothonotary Casal. Eleven noblemen in scarlet gowns were sent to bring him to audience. The two ambassadors together came into the College, Casal being on the right hand; and they demanded audience in the presence of the Chiefs of the Ten.
June 27. Deliberazioni Senato (Secreta), Filza 8. 311. The Doge and Senate to Gasparo Contarini, Ambassador at the Papal Court.
Arrival at Venice of Dr. Stephen [Gardyner], ambassador from the English King.
Ayes, 166. Noes, 2. Neutrals, 4.
June 27. Original Letter Book, Letter No. 14, St. Mark's Library. 312. Gasparo Contarini to the Signory.
Sigismund of Ferrara, having departed on his way to Naples, has been captured and placed in an Orsini castle.
Does not know who contrived this plot. This morning the Pope told him he suspected Sir Gregory Casal and the French ambassador. The Pope seems to have taken this affair much amiss, and said that as yet he did not know where they had put Sigismund, but that he was making enquiry, and would have him released.
Viterbo, 27th June.
[Italian, 3¾ pages.]
June 30. Sanuto Diaries, v. xlviii. p. 243. 313. Marco Antonio Venier to the Signory.
The eight months truce between the Emperor, the most Christian King, and the King of England has been concluded, so that henceforth commerce may be carried on in those countries. Sends the articles of the truce.
London, 30th June. Registered by Sanuto, 27th July.


  • 1. Clerk or Tayler? They were both at the French Court in May and June.
  • 2. “Che é una fortezza assai buona.”
  • 3. In vol. vii. State Papers, p. 84, there is a letter from Lee, date Valladolid, 20th June 1528, alluding to “our release,” but it contains no notice of the imprisonment at Pozza, nor of Ghinucci's having been deprived of his servants.
  • 4. “Scampati di mano di Giudei et venuti in terra di promissione.”
  • 5. In a subsequent part of his narrative, Navagero writes that the English and French (sic) ambassadors and the Milanese remained at Burgos, and were not sent to Villa-Verde until a month after Navagero's arrival there.
  • 6. “La qual non voleva usar col Re di Franza per all' hora.”
  • 7. “Molto mal a proposito.”
  • 8. Joan de Calvimont, Second President of the Parliament of Bordeaux. See Père Daniel.
  • 9. This document is quoted by Dr. Lingard (History of England, vol. iv. pp. 244, 245, ed. Loudon, 1854), who abridged it from Le Grand, III 27–48.
  • 10. “Et in sua compagnia restò il Commendator Figueroa.” Figueroa, of whose conduct Navagero made great complaint, had been charged with the safe custody of the French ambassadors and their colleagues; and therefore I infer that his companionship with Lee and Ghinucci was that of a gaoler.
  • 11. In Navagero's journal it appears that he and the French ambassadors arrived at Fonterabia on the 30th May 1528.
  • 12. By the general contents of this letter it appears that the audience of which it gives account took place on the 7th, Contarini having had hit first private audience of the Pope on the 6th.
  • 13. French ambassador in Venice, by name Jean Langeac. He succeeded Canossa, who was, however, still in Venice on the 28th August, 1528. (See Manara, “Intorno alla vita ed alle gesta del Conte Lodovico di Canossa,”p. 19.)
  • 14. In the original: “Me disse etiam circa la dispensa del matrimonio che ricerchava il Re Anglico, et qui mi discorse le ragione che pro et contra si dicevano, alla qual impresa havea destmato il Revmo Campegio, il quale era bon jurista, era pratico de Engelterra et contidente di Cesare, il quale forsi faria mtendere la verità al Re Anglico et ponerebbe qualche assettamento. Questo è quanto ho habuto da Sua Santità degno di notitia.”
  • 15. “Un gran gioto.” See Pulci Morgante Maggiore, Canto 1, St. 37. “Che pensi tu Ghiotton, gittar quer sasso.”