Henry VIII: August 1540, 1-10

Pages 481-488

Letters and Papers, Foreign and Domestic, Henry VIII, Volume 15, 1540. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1896.

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August 1540, 1–10

1 Aug. 944. The King's Household.
See Grants in August, No. 7.
1 Aug. 945. [James V. to Paul III.]
Royal MS.
18 B. vi., 97.
B. M.
Recommends Robert Erskin for the deanery of Aberdeen, vacant by the death of James Kincragy. He has resigned his provostship of Trinity College near Edinburgh. Edinburgh, cal. Aug. 1540.
Lat., p. 1. Copy.
1 Aug. 946. The Same to Ghinucci.
Ibid., f. 97.
B. M.
To the same effect. Edinburgh, cal. Aug. 1540.
Lat., p. 1. Copy.
1 Aug. 947. James V. to Charles V.
Royal MS.
18 B. vi., 98b.
B. M.
Received about the end of July his letters touching the plunder of Vincent Schellevant and certain Ostenders by Robt. Fogo. Fogo sold everything in England, but is now on his return to Scotland put in prison. Complains of injuries done to Scottish merchants by men of Zealand, Holland, Flanders, and Spain, by which they are driven to extremities. Edinburgh, cal. Aug. 1540.
Lat. Copy, p. 1.
Ib., 202b. 2. Another copy.
Lat., p. 1.
2 Aug. 948. Sir Edward Ryngeley to Norfolk and the Council.
R. O. About three weeks ago a new wharf of timber work was set up against Becham Bolworke. Yesterday night, 2 (sic) Aug., about 160 foot was cast down by the sea, through the Surveyor's fault, because the wharf was not filled. Has spoken divers times to him and Master Hall, his deputy, to fill it, because the wind was N.W. and the spring tide almost at the highest. Found great fault with the Master Carpenter and Warden for setting up such a work upon the danger of the sea and not speaking for filling up the wharf. They answered to the Deputy and Sir Edw. Wotton, that they had often spoken to the Surveyor about it. The greatest loss is the earth which the sea washed away, which was cast out of the dyke of the said bulwark, which should serve to have filled part of the said wharf. The West “gytte” (jetty) by the Ruysbancke has been unfilled with chalk since the writer came hither. Has spoken to the Surveyor and the King's commissioners here. As the chalk washes through the “gyttye” into the haven, it gathers much sand about it, so that the haven is more decayed within this two years than it hath been in a great time before. If the said “gytte” be not filled before winter, it will be in great danger of being broken in pieces. Paradyse decays sore.
The Treasurer here ought to be empowered to lay out money for necessary repairs and casualties. The Surveyor says that all the money he receives is appointed where he shall bestow it. Asks them to call the Surveyor before them, who is now in the King's Court. If he had licence to come over, would show the King things very necessary to be looked on in time. Callys, 2 August. Signed.
3. Add. Endd.
2 Aug. 949. The Imperial Ambassador in France to [Charles V.].
Add. 28,592,
f. 162.
B. M.
The King left Ennet (fn. 1) on the 16th ult. to go to the port of Gratia (Havre), and has only stayed three days at Naufbourg, journeying with great discomfort. Many sick here. Councils every day. The ambassadors of England and Venice more busy than usual, and apparently well received. Secret negociations, presumably for a league. Ambassador of Saxony arrived. The writer expects war will come of it. Till now there has been no talk of the king of England taking part, but the gentleman (fn. 2) he lately sent to authorise the marriage of Labrit's daughter is still here—in order, it is supposed, that Francis may persuade the duke of Cleves to put up with the divorce. * * *
Spanish. Modern copy from Simancas, pp. 7. Headed: “Del Embaxador de Francia, de ii. Agosto 1540. See Spanish Calendar, VI. i., No. 120.
3 Aug. 950. Robert earl of Sussex, Great Chamberlain.
See Grants in August, No. 12.
3 Aug. 951. The Comendador Mayor to Juan Vasquez.
Add. MS.
28,592, f. 159.
B. M.
Madrid, 3 Aug. 1540:—While awaiting with much anxiety an answer to what he had written, the courier from Pedro de Avila brought him the Emperor's letter of the 17th July from Antwerp; the other despatched by the merchants is not come. * * *
As to the king of England's divorce, it is not without a reason that he claims spiritual superiority to judge these marriages according to his own will; yet bad as it is, this is not mal à propos for the matter of the duke of Cleves. Learns also by a letter of the Master of the Posts, the difference which has arisen between the Landgrave and the duke of Saxony. Thinks God is bringing good out of all these things. * * *
Spanish. Modern transcript from Simancas, pp. 5.
4 Aug. 952. [James V. to Lord Beures].
Royal MS.
18 B. vi., 98.
B. M.
Writes on behalf of Geo. Kinloch, Alex. Wycht, and others, of Dundee, who chartered a vessel belonging to Robt. Coupper, of Vere, to convey their goods to Danskin, Ree and Stockholme, and back to Scotland; but the master of the ship left them at Elsinore, refusing to bring them back to Scotland. Falkland, 4 Aug.
Fr., p. 1. Copy. Begins: “Mon Cousin.”
6 Aug. 953. Marillac to Francis I.
R. O.
Kaulek, 208.
(The whole
Wrote before of the execution of Mr. Thomas Cromwell and lord Hungerford, which was followed two days after by that of six doctors, three of whom, named Pol, (fn. 3) Abel, and “le prieur Dancaster,” (fn. 4) were hanged as traitors, for speaking in favour of the Pope, and three named Bernes, Guyard (Kaulek reads “Gagard”) and Hierosme burnt as heretics. It was wonderful to see adherents to the two opposing parties dying at the same time, and it gave offence to both. And it was no less strange to hear than horrible to see, for the obstinacy and constancy respectively of both parties, and the perversion of justice of which both parties complained, in that they had never been called to judgment, nor knew why they were condemned, and that the condition of Christians in this age of grace was worse than that of the Jews under the rigour of the Law, by which a man was to be heard and convicted before he was judged. This is observed everywhere except in England, where, by a new Act of Parliament, if two witnesses swear before the King's council to have heard anyone speak against the King's edicts touching obedience and the articles determined upon religion, he shall, without further process, suffer death. Everyone is dismayed by the encouragement thus given to false witnesses. Of this law, if law it may be called, an example appeared in the complaint of one of the above-named persons who suffered as traitors, who said he had never spoken either for or against the authority of the Pope nor knew that he had ever said anything to move the King's anger against him, unless it were that, ten years ago, being asked his opinion on the divorce of queen Katharine, the Emperor's aunt, he said he thought her the King's lawful wife. This and the affirmations of the others so moved the people that if they had had a leader there might have been a great tumult; to obviate which, commissioners have been suddenly appointed to inquire touching those who approve or speak of what the doctors said at their execution, which is fresh matter for a greater butchery than ever, because it is difficult to have a people entirely opposed to new errors which does not hold with the ancient authority of the Church and of the Holy See, or, on the other hand, hating the Pope, which does not share some opinions with the Germans. Yet the Government (ceulx cy) will not have either the one or the other, but insists on their keeping what is commanded, which is so often altered that it is difficult to understand what it is. The rest put to death, all for treason, were, on Wednesday last, ten, among whom were the bastard son of the late Grand Esquire, Master Carau, and a Carthusian (fn. 5) who refused to relinquish his habit, and others not worth naming.
This King being lately with a small company at Hampton Court, ten miles hence, supped at Richmond with the Queen that was, so merrily that some thought he meant to reinstate her, but others think it was done to get her consent to the dissolution of the marriage and make her subscribe what she had said thereupon, which is not only what they wanted but also what she thinks they expected (ce qu'elle estime qu'ilz pensoient). The latter opinion is the more likely, as the King drew her apart in company with the three first councillors he had, who are not commonly called in to such confidences. Thinks it would show great inconstancy to take her back now, and moreover she did not sup with him as she did when she was Queen, but at another table adjoining his, as other ladies who are not of the blood do when he eats in company.
French. Modern transcript, pp. 5. Headed: “Despesche au Roy, du 6 jour d'Aoust, 1540 (Et a Monseigneur le Connestable pour l'heure nihil).”
6 Aug. 954. Marillac to Montmorency.
Kaulek, 211. [London], 6 Aug.:—His letter to the King shall be his excuse for not dilating further upon this lamentable matter. The fine ordinance newly forged here, for judging men without hearing them or letting them know their accusation, is as unhappy in its result as wicked in its origin. Another has been added to it, by which the Estates have entirely transferred their authority to the King, whose sole opinion will henceforth have the force of an act of Parliament. Although formerly everyone condescended to his wishes, still there was some form of justice, but now will be only the King's pleasure. Thus Parliament, so often prorogued and re-assembled in years past, has now been closed, and it is thought that for this reign there will be no meeting of estates, except that which is ordinary every year for the expedition of matters of justice. Will not speak of the pamphlets (cayers) and books which these bishops print daily, in which, to be found faithful and good servants in treating of true obedience, they permit their King to interpret, add to, take away, and make, more divine law than the apostles or their vicars and successors ever dared to attempt. They make of him not only a King to be obeyed, but an idol to be worshipped. Thus a climax of evils has arisen and all sorts of unhappiness are registered in England. And though Montmorency understands matters better than he can write, will, for once, state briefly what he has seen and can learn about this.
First, to commence with the head, this Prince seems tainted, among other vices, with three which in a King may be called plagues. The first is that he is so covetous that all the riches in the world would not satisfy him. Hence the ruin of the abbeys, spoil of all churches that had anything to take, suppression of the knights of St. John of Rhodes, from whom has been taken not only their ancient revenue, but the moveables which they had acquired which they have not been able to leave by will. Hence, too, the accusation of so many rich men, who, whether condemned or acquitted, are always plucked (y laissent la plume); and it is unlikely that he should pardon the living who troubles even the dead, without fearing the offence to the religion of the world which reveres them as saints, witness St. Thomas of Canterbury, who, because his relics and bones were adorned with gold and jewels, has been declared traitor. Everything is good prize, and he does not reflect that to make himself rich he has impoverished his people, and does not gain in goods what he loses in renown. As it seemed difficult to attain his desires after withdrawing obedience from the Holy See, he got preachers and ministers to persuade the people that it was better to employ the Church revenue on hospitals, colleges, and other foundations tending to the public good than to fatten lazy and useless monks. Having under this pretext taken to himself what had been consecrated to God, when the same preachers and ministers exhorted him to fulfil his duty and remit it to better uses they have been condemned and burnt as heretics, as they said at their execution, to the scandal of everyone. And although they well deserved to be the end of that of which they had been the beginning, still, those who commanded them are not free from blame, for, if they showed repentance for what was done, they should restore what they have demolished; but they easily find a thousand ways to take things to themselves and not a single one to give them up.
Thence proceeds the second plague, distrust and fear. This King, knowing how many changes he has made, and what tragedies and scandals he has created, would fain keep in favor with everybody, but does not trust a single man, expecting to see them all offended, and he will not cease to dip his hand in blood as long as he doubts his people. Hence every day edicts are published so sanguinary that with a thousand guards one would scarce be safe. Hence too it is that now with us, as affairs incline, he makes alliances which last as long as it makes for him to keep them.
The third plague, lightness and inconstancy, proceeds partly from the other two and partly from the nature of the nation, and has perverted the rights of religion, marriage, faith and promise, as softened wax can be altered to any form.
The subjects take example from the Prince, and the ministers seek only to undo each other to gain credit, and under colour of their master's good each attends to his own. For all the fine words of which they are full (“plaincts” for “pleins”), they will act only as necessity and interest compel them. Henceforward I will write things simply as they pass; the above is to let you know that I have found what you predicted. Subscribed: 6 Aug. '540.
6 Aug. 955. Francis I. to Henry VIII.
R. O.
S. P., viii.
Has received his letters from Karne and heard the charge of him and Wallop. They will give the King his answer. Wateville, (fn. 6) 6 Aug. 1540. Signed.
Fr., p.
1. Add. Endd. Countersigned: Bochetel.
6 Aug. 956. [Vasquez de Molina] to Luys Sarmiento.
Add. MS.
28, 592, f. 166.
B. M.
* * They wrote [from Flanders, 22 July] that the king of England was going to put away the sister of the duke of Cleves whom he married a short time before, on the ground that she had already been married or betrothed to another, which is no bad news as the Duke intended to strengthen himself by that King for the occupation of Gueldres. Moreover, they wrote that the Landgrave of Hesse had put away his wife, a sister of the duke of Saxony, and married another.
Spanish, p. 1. Extract by Bergenroth from Simancas MS., the original endd.: “de Madrid a vj de agosto 1540.” See Spanish Calendar VI. i. No. 119.
7 Aug. 957. Port of London.
Lansd. MS.
170, f. 308b.
B. M.
Appointment of Wm. Broke, fishmonger (piscarius), of London, to the office of anchorage in the port of London. Made by lord Russell, by virtue of his letters patent as Great Admiral dated 28 July 32 Hen. VIII. Dated 7 Aug. 1540, 32 Hen. VIII.
Lat. Modern copy, pp. 3.
7 Aug. 958. Sir Robert Constable's Lands.
R. O. Depositions of Thos. Gerge, of Hugat, Yorks., Thos. Savage, of Holme in Spaldingmore, Wm. North, of Butterwyk, Hugh Wylford, of Beverley, and Humfride Chawner of Brydlyngton, concerning the gift of the manor of Butterwyk by Sir Robt. Constable, late attainted, to Thos. and Wm. Constable, his sons, taken upon a commission to Sir Raffe Ellerkar, Robt. Chaloner, and Wm. Babthorp. The gift was made 18 or 19 Hen. VIII. York, 7 Aug. 32 Hen. VIII.
Pp. 3. Large paper.
7 Aug. 959. Sir Wm. Brereton, George abp. op Dublin, and Robt. Cowley, Master of the Rolls of Ireland, to the Council.
R. O. Have, as you commanded, made search for the stuff of lord Leonard Grey, late deputy; and enclose inventory. Have also examined Arland Ussher, who has nothing of lord Leonard's but a silver bason; he had a steel casket and divers sealed bags which one Lute, Grey's servant, took away, and which, he thinks, must have contained a great sum. Dublin, 7 Aug. Signed.
To the dukes of Norfolk, Suffolk, and other Councillors.
R. O. 2. Inventory of stuff found in the lord Deputy's chamber at St. Mary Abbey by my lord of Dublin and the Master of the Rolls.
23 items very briefly described, such as “8 tun and a pipe Gascon wine,” “four dozen calf skins,” “19 pair of shoes,” “two pewter pots,” “two chairs.” “In the chamber of Christchurch”:—“a parliament robe,” and three other items. Corn at St. Mary's:—65 pecks of wheat and 180 of oats. Note at the bottom by Robert Cowley, certifying that the above were surveyed the morrow after receipt of the letters from the King's Council; for immediately upon that receipt the Lord Justice and Abp. went to Maynooth and left Cowley to search St. Mary's and Christchurch.
ii. “These parcels following pertaining to the lord Leonard Grey and left at Maynooth.”
Two great pots and a great cup, 6 bowls and a cover (4 of them and the cover being in gage), 7 standing cups with covers, 4 cups with covers to drink wine or ale in, 12 trenchers and a casting bottle for rose water, all double gilt. 2 silver goblets and 6 spoons, 5 silver salts with 3 covers double gilt; 2 cups of a saye, the one double gilt; 3 silver candlesticks, 1 bason double gilt remaining with the Justice Hothe, 2 silver flagons. Parcel gilt:—1 bason, 1 ewer, 3 chalices, a cross to set on a church altar and a George.
List of hangings, bedroom furniture, wearing apparel, handguns, kitchen utensils, &c. Signed: Wyllyam Brereton—George Dublin.—Robert Cowley.
Pp. 3.
7 Aug. 960. France and Cleves.
Ribier, i. 538. Ratification by William duke of Juliers, &c., of a league concluded with France, 17 July 1540, by Francis card. Turnon and Wm. Poyet, Chancellor of France, with his commissioners Ghogreff, Herman Wachtendonck, and Herman Cruser. Cleves, 7 Aug. 1540.
8 Aug. 961. Wallop to Henry VIII.
R. O.
St. P. viii.
Mydylton arrived on the 3rd with the King's letters dated Hampton Court, 31 July. Communicated the contents to the French king, who was wondrously glad to hear it. Karne will report his answer and also the saying of the queen of Navarre.
Andrew Doria was reported to be taken by Barbarossa, but now news is come that he is at Tunis for the sure keeping of the Gullett, fearing the Allarbes of Affrickes coming thither, who have taken the town, as the French king said. He thought the Emperor would be constrained to go shortly into Italy. The bruit of the marriage between the bp. of Rome's niece and the son of Mons. de Guise continues. The Bishop will give with her 200,000 cr., make the cardinal of Lorraine legate of France, and Guyse's other son a cardinal. Guyse's son is very sick. Mons. de Lottricke is at the point of death. Coddebecke, 8 Aug. Signed.
3. Add. Endd.
8 Aug. 962. James V. to the Governors of Bremen.
Royal MS.
18 B. vi.,
B. M.
Complaints are made of injuries committed by men of Holland, Friesland, and Flanders, and especially of Bremen, in fishing among the Orkneys, Shetlands, and other Northern islands. Desires them to order their men to abstain from injuring his subjects. Edinburgh, 8 Aug. 1540.
Lat. Copy, pp. 2.
963. James V. to the Towns of Schiedam and Rotterdam.
Royal MS.
18 B. vi., 99.
B. M.
Complains of the outrages committed by their fishermen against his subjects about the Isles of Orkney and Shetland, and desires that they may be forbidden to injure his subjects by land or sea. His admiral, sent thither to prevent such outrages, has lately seized some of the culprits and one of their ships. Edinburgh.
Lat., pp. 2. Copy.
9 Aug. 964. Forests beyond Trent.
See Grants in August, No. 22.
9 Aug. 965. C. Monstant (?) to [Queen Mary of Scotland].
Balcarres MS.,
iv. 104.
Adv. Lib.
I have your letters touching the marriage of my daughter, which I should have thought strange but for the assurance I have of your goodness, and that the King and you have done her the honor to give her to Outygny, one of the gentlemen of your household. Thanks her for her letters. Perceives she has begun to fulfil the promises she made at her departure. Hears from her daughter that God has sent her “ung beau filz.” Thanks God and hopes it will cause her soon to come to France. “De voustre pouvre mayson de Raysze,” 9 Aug. Signed.
Fr., p.
10 Aug. 966. The Privy, Council.
R. O.
St. P. i. 646.
of P. Council,
vii. p. 3.
Order of Privy Council, 10 Aug. 32 Hen. VIII., that there should be a clerk attendant upon the said Council to write, enter, and register decrees, determinations, &c., in a book, and Wm. Paget, late the Queen's Secretary, was appointed and sworn in presence of the said Council, whose names ensue, viz.:—
Archbp. of Canterbury, lord Audley of Walden, Chancellor, the dukes of Norfolk and Suffolk, earls of Southampton, Sussex, and Hertford, lord Russell, Admiral, the bps. of Durham and Winchester, lord Sands, Chamberlain, Sir Thos. Cheiney, Warden of the Cinque Ports and Treasurer of the Household, Sir Wm. Kingston, Comptroller, Sir A. Browne, Master of the Horse, Sir A. Wingfeelde, Vice-Chamberlain, Wriothesley, Sadler, Riche, and Sir John Baker, Chancellor of First Fruits and Tenths.
Later copy, p. 1. Endd. in a still later hand: “The originale of the office of the clark of the Consell.” And also: “Montjoy, Blunt lo. Montjoy, Capt. Peter D'lean (?), a page, and four servants, a licence to travel for 3 year to travel.”
R. O. 2. Another modern copy. Pp. 2. Endd.
R. O. 3. Another modern copy. P. 1. Endd.
*** The above is the first order in Henry VIII.'s reign printed in Nicolas' Proceedings of the Privy Council, and from this date they are consecutive to the 8 April 1542, where Nicolas leaves off.
10 Aug. 967. Cromwell's Robes.
R. O. Delivered, 10 Aug. 32 Hen. VIII., to the earl of Sussex and lord Chamberlain of England “a robe with the kertell and whod of astate for the creation of an earl of right crimson velvet furred with miniver which was the late earl of Essex'.” Signed by Sussex.
Similar receipts of the same date on the same paper for robes belonging to the late earl of Essex, signed by Sir Thomas Hennege, Sir Edw. Baynton, David Vyncent of the Wardrobe of Beds, Nich. Bristowe, the King's clerk and Edm. Cotton, servant to Mr. Hennege.
Pp. 2.
R. O. 2. Memoranda in the same hand of the delivery of the above articles (here dated, 11 Aug. 32 Hen. VIII.), with an additional item of a purple riding coat to Mr. Gate.
P. 1.
10 Aug. 968. M. de St. Mauris to Charles V.
P. Arch. Nat.
The Emperor will see by his letter of the 5th what little information he has been able to get about the Cleves marriage. Never believed what Francis said about the duke of Cleves when the Emperor passed through this kingdom. Francis' discontent with the Emperor. Spoke to the Constable about the familiarity between the Venetian and English ambassadors, which, taken with the reports from England and Rome, gave suspicion of some intrigue against the Emperor. He answered that there was no news as to England, and that the Venetians naturally sought protection against the Turk. Suspects, from his ready answer, that there is some other intrigue in which the French are concerned. * * * 10 Aug. 1540.
Spanish calendar, V., i., No. 117.
10 Aug. 969. Charles V. to the Eschevins of Ghent.
R. T. 142. Has read their arguments against the request of the town of Bruges for permission to sell all kinds of English cloths wholesale as well as in retail, but thinks he cannot justly withhold permission. If, however, the clothiers of Ghent should suffer by it, he will, upon their information thereof, take further order. La Haye, 10 Aug. 1542.
French. Modern transcript from Ghent, pp. 2.


  • 1. Not Lunel, as Gayangos thinks, but Anet in the Department of Eure et Loir.
  • 2. Sir Edw. Carne.
  • 3. Dr. Edward Powell.
  • 4. Laurence Cooke, prior of White Friars, Doncaster.
  • 5. Wm. Horne?
  • 6. Misprinted “Ubateville” in St. P. The place is Watiéville in the Dep. of the Somme.