Biography of Eustace Chapuys 1490-1556

1533 Catherine Aragon Demoted to Princess

1536 Death of Catherine of Aragon

1536 Funeral of Catherine of Aragon

1536 Henry VIII Tournament Accident

1536 Anne Boleyn's Miscarriage

1536 Arrest of Anne Boleyn

1536 Trial of Brereton, Norris, Smeaton, and Weston

1536 Trial of Anne and George Boleyn

1536 Execution of George Boleyn, Brereton, Norris, Smeaton and Weston

1536 Betrothal of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour

1536 Post Execution Sources

1541 Executions

In 1490 Eustace Chapuys was born.

Letters and Papers 1529. 25 Oct 1529. Bradford, 256. 6026. Chapuys (age 39) to Charles V (age 29).

On the receipt of your letter on Thursday the 21st, dated Piacenza, I sent to Windsor to ask for an audience. As the administration has fallen principally into the hands of the Duke of Norfolk (age 56), and the communication is more agreeable to him than that of the marriage, I hastened to visit him. The Cardinal (age 56), who was dis-evangelised on the day of St. Luke the Evangelist (18 Oct.), has been deprived of his offices. I was received by the Duke with great distinction, and expressed to him the regard in which you had always held him for his goodwill. He seemed highly pleased, and said that he and his family had always been attached to the house of Burgundy; that no one more lamented the late disagreements than himself, but that all the evil and misunderstanding ought to be attributed to those who formerly directed the King's councils, acting by their own will and authority, with which the King himself was often dissatisfied.

In reply to his remark that he should like to serve your Majesty against the Turk, I praised his virtuous feelings, and told him that was the main object of my communication; but for the better security of peace, which the King had done so much to establish, one unhappy difference between himself and the Queen remained to be settled. I told him that, however strongly he might feel from family considerations, he could not but feel as a true knight, nor act otherwise than if it had been his own daughter, and as conscience directed; and that your Majesty was convinced that he had not been the promoter of this step. He replied that he would sooner have lost one of his hands than that such a question should have arisen; but it was entirely a matter of law and conscience, and he had never been appealed to; that it had been submitted to ecclesiastics and doctors, who had pronounced against the validity of the marriage; that if the dispensation you held was illegal, the King would consider himself the most abused prince in Christendom; and that if you had not declared yourself in it so openly, it might have sooner been brought to a satisfactory issue. I explained to him the constraint under which you acted; and that, as to the king of England not having declared himself a party in the matter, it was clear that he had done so from the proceedings of the English ambassadors at Rome. Finding he remained thoughtful, I changed the subject. Shortly after he turned to me with a laugh, and said, "How glad the Emperor will be to hear of this fall of the Cardinal (age 56), and his loss of office?" I answered, I thought you would, but not from any hatred you had to the Cardinal (age 56); and that he could have done neither good nor ill to you, and was not of such importance as that you would care to be avenged, or trouble yourself about his disgrace; but what you rejoiced at was, that the king of England would now learn who had been his evil counsellors, and leave the management of affairs to men who from birth and circumstances were more competent. I told him that I was the first who had broken through the chain of paying court to the Cardinal (age 56), and addressed myself to him. He thanked me for my good intentions, and said that the government was managed not by an individual but by the Council, where he usually assisted, and would promote Your Majesty's interests.

In order to please the Duke (age 56) I asked him what I should do, although I had already sent one of my secretaries to the King. He told me that the King had ordered that application should be made direct to himself, before any other person was acquainted with the communication. He followed me to the hall, using very courteous language.

On the 22nd my secretary returned from Windsor, stating that the King would be at Greenwich on Saturday, and I was to go the day after. On my reaching Greenwich [Map] I found a civil gentleman, named Poller (Bollen?), sent by the King to conduct me to the palace. There I found the bishop of London (age 55), who led me to the King's antechamber, where the Court was assembled, and was received by two dukes and the archbishop of Canterbury (age 79). I conversed with these lords, waiting for the King to go to mass; and we talked of the conference at Bologna. The King, on going to mass, came directly to me, and taking me by the sleeve said, with the utmost graciousness, "You have news from my brother the Emperor." On answering Yes, he asked the date, and then said your Majesty was very careful to give him information. I assured him that you were anxious to make him partaker of all affairs, and thus show your brotherly affection. I then presented your letters, and, as to the particulars of my credentials, he said that the ambassadors in your court were authorised to treat about them. Speaking of your going into Italy I bespoke his good offices.

On his return from mass, he came up to me again, and resumed the subject. When we talked of the necessity of resisting the Turk, and of the Pope's arrival at Bologna on the 5th, I said I thought it advisable that he should commission his ambassadors with the Pope to treat; and I combated his remark that he could do but little against the Turk, seeing he was wealthy, and as absolute in his dominions as the Pope. He urged that this affair was chiefly yours, and if you wished to accomplish it you must make peace with the princes of Italy. I assured him you had never ceased from efforts in this direction. The conversation then turned on the duke Francesco Sforza; and I urged, in opposition to his remark, that your proceedings were as favorable to the Duke as could be. He objected to the cession of Pavia and Alexandria, alleging the cruelties which had taken place at Sienna. I told him Pavia was out of dispute, as it was already given up. "Between ourselves," said he, "I think it is a great shame that whilst the Turk is in Austria, the patrimony of the Emperor, he should not rescue it, but make war upon Christians." On my urging the danger that might be expected from Sforza and the Venetians if your troops were withdrawn, he urged that neither could do anything. Shortly after, changing his tone, he said, with some emphasis, "My brother the king of France has made your Emperor a marvellous offer." This he repeated three times. I said, if it were so, he had now done a virtuous part, and kept his professions. After various other topics it grew late. Not a word was said of the Queen. After dinner he asked me if I had anything more to say.

All here are satisfied with the treaty of Cambray. As for the observance of it, the Queen, as I have already written, has expressed her doubt of its duration. It is supposed to have cost this King 800,000 ducats. He is not therefore likely to break it. People here are not very anxious to repeat the dose, as it is not to their taste. At present they seem on good terms with the French. The ambassador has been only once at court with his brother since my arrival. He has been commanded to deliver his message to the Council, and abstain from communication with the Cardinal; at which he was greatly vexed. Various ambassadors are here. The most in favour is the Milanese, on whom the King has spent money. Those who are now in most credit are the dukes of Norfolk (age 56) and Suffolk (age 45). There is not a single person about the King who is not saturated with French money; and though they profess great affection to you, their affection for money is much stronger. I have submitted the proposition to the King respecting the sea being kept free from pirates. He has ordered a good reception for Mons. Rosymbez.

The downfall of the Cardinal (age 56) is complete. He is dismissed from the Council, deprived of the Chancellorship, and constrained to make an inventory of his goods in his own hand, that nothing may be forgotten. It is said that he has acknowledged his faults, and presented all his effects to the King. Yesterday the King returned to Greenwich by water secretly, in order to see them, and found them much greater than he expected. He took with him "sa mye" (his darling-Ann Boleyn (age 28)), her mother (age 49), and a gentleman of his chamber (Norris?) The Cardinal, notwithstanding his troubles, has always shown a good face, especially towards the town, but since St. Luke's Day all has been changed to sighs and tears night and day. The King, either moved by pity, or for fear if he should die the whole extent of his effects would not be found, sent him a ring for his comfort. He has withdrawn with a small attendance to a place ten miles off. They have sent for his son from Paris. People say execrable things of him, all which will be known at this Parliament. But those who have raised the storm will not let it abate, not knowing, if he returned to power, what would become of them. The ambassador of France commiserates him most. It was feared the Cardinal (age 56) would get his goods out of the country, and therefore a strict watch was kept at the ports, and the watch insisted on opening the coffers of cardinal Campeggio (age 54), notwithstanding his passport, and, on his refusal, broke open the locks. He said they had done him great wrong to suppose that he could be corrupted by the Cardinal, since he had been proof against the innumerable presents offered him by the King.

The Chancellor's seal has remained in the hands of the Duke of Norfolk (age 56) till this morning, when it was transferred to Sir Thomas More (age 51). Every one is delighted at his promotion, because he is an upright and learned man, and a good servant of the Queen. He was Chancellor of Lancaster, an office now conferred on the Sieur Villeury (Fitzwilliam). Richard Pace, a faithful servant of your Majesty, whom the Cardinal had kept in prison for two years, as well in the Tower of London as in a monastery (Syon House), is set at liberty. Unless his mind should again become unsettled, it is thought he will rise in higher favour at Court than ever.

There is a young man here, sent by the duke of Saxony, who has much business with the King and the bishop of London (age 55).

Of the King's affair there is nothing new to communicate, except what the bishop of London (age 55) has told me, that Dr. Stokesley (age 54) had been sent to France to consult the doctors of Paris. The Queen begs your Majesty will send some respectable person there to do the same, for without some definitive sentence the King will remain obstinate in his opinions. She thinks that delay will be more dangerous than profitable, and therefore we have thought it desirable not to consent to the postponement demanded. To avoid creating suspicion in the mind of the King, she thinks I had better cease to visit her, but she will provide means for my speaking with her in private. London, 25 Oct. 1529.

P.S.-Two days after I had written the above, the Cardinal (age 56) was definitively condemned by the Council, declared a rebel, and guilty of high treason for having obtained a legatine bull, whereby he had conferred many benefices in the King's patronage. He has been deprived of his dignities, his goods confiscated, and himself sentenced to prison until the King shall decide. This sentence was not given in his presence, but to his two proctors. This he will not find easy of digestion, but worse remains behind (mais encoures ne serat il quicte pour le prix).

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

After this we came to speak about the Queen (age 47) and to argue whether she had or had not been known by Prince Arthur, and after responding victoriously to the suppositions and conjectures which he alleged in support of his opinion, I produced such arguments in proof of the contrary that he really knew not what to answer. Which arguments having been brought forward on more than one occasion I will not trouble Your Majesty with a reproduction of them, and will only say "que venant a reprendre le dit seigneur roy ce que plusieurs fois il auoit confesse, que la royne demeura pucelle du dit prince Arthus, et voyant quil ne le pouvoit nyer, il dit quil lauoit plusieurs fois dit mais que ce nauoit este que en ieu, et que lhome en iouant et banquetant dit souvent pluseures (sic) choses que ne sont veritables." Having said as much as if he had obtained a great success, or found some subtle point towards the gaining of his cause, he began to recover his self-possession and said confidently to me: "Now I think I have given you full satisfaction on all points; what else do you want?" Whatever the King (age 41) might say the satisfaction was not all-sufficing, but it served me admirably, much more than he himself could imagine, to dispute certain premises he had laid down. I told him that I flattered myself that I was the ambassador of the prince who desired most his welfare, profit, and honour, as well as the tranquillity of his kingdom. I had brought with me Master Hesdin, there present, who was, and acknowledged himself to be, his affectionate servant- as did also all Your Majesty's officers-that he might be present at the conference and hear what his answer was; but I would promise most solemnly that nothing that might be said at that audience should be reported to you unless he himself wished, for I consented to the said Hesdin giving me the lie if I ever attempted to write to Your Majesty anything he (the King) did dislike. This I said to the King (age 41) that I might inspire greater confidence and make him open his heart more fully (lui fere deslier le sac). The better to gain his confidence I told him how happy I had once considered myself at being chosen by Your Majesty to represent your person near so great and magnanimous a king, hoping that his Privy Council, taking due cognizance of the affairs pending between the two crowns, everything should go on smoothly. Now, on the contrary, affairs had taken such a disorderly turn, and were in such confusion that I considered myself unhappy in having to represent Your Majesty, inasmuch as I had continually assured you in my despatches that whatever countenance the King (age 41) put on, and whatever he did his heart and the affection he bore Your Majesty were not affected, and that he would never think of doing anything that might give occasion to suspect that he intended living otherwise than in peace and amity with Your Imperial Majesty. At these words, and without waiting to hear the rest, as if he wished to avoid alt further conversation on this delicate subject, the King (age 41) frowned, and moving his head to and fro, said rather abruptly: "Before I listen to such representations, I must know from whom they proceed, whether from the Emperor, your master, or from yourself; for if they be private remarks of your own I shall know how to answer them." And upon my answering that it was superfluous to ask whether I could have received commission to complain of facts and things which had only taken place a week ago, the intelligence of which would require a full month to be transmitted, and perhaps, too, four successive despatches of mine before it was believed-my general charge and instructions being to maintain by all best means the peace and friendship between Your Majesty and him, and especially to watch over the Queen's (age 47) affairs, since from them depended in a great measure that very friendship-the King (age 41) replied that you yourself had nothing to do with the laws, statutes, and constitutions of his kingdom, and that in spite of all opposition he would pass such laws and ordinances in his dominions as he thought proper, adding many other things in the same strain. My reply was that Your Majesty neither could nor would hinder any such legislative measures, but on the contrary would, if necessary, help him in them unless they personally affected the Queen (age 47), whom he wanted to compel to renounce her appeal [to Rome] and submit entirely to the judgment of the prelates of his kingdom who, either won by promises or threatened with that punishment which had already attained those who upheld the Queen's (age 47) right, could not fail to decide in his favour and against her. After this I repeated what I had told him on previous occasions in Your Majesty's name, that is to say: that the fact of the case being determined here, in England, as he wished, would in nowise remove hereafter the doubts about the succession for the reasons above explained, He, himself, considering how unreasonable and illegal it would be to have the case tried and decided in England, when the authority of the Holy Apostolic See was concerned, had from the beginning of the suit asked the Papal permission for the two cardinals (Campeggio (age 58) and York) to take cognizance of the case here. Even after that he had allowed the Queen (age 47) to appeal to Rome, and in the course of time not satisfied with that had himself, and through others, solicited the Queen (age 47) to consent to the case being tried out of Rome, not here in England, for he knew that to be a most unreasonable demand, but in a neutral place. For these reasons I said the Queen (age 47) cannot and ought not to be tied by laws and statutes to which no one hardly had consented, and which had been carried by compulsion. To this remark of mine the King (age 41) replied half in a passion (demy appassione): "All persuasions and remonstrances are absolutely in vain. Had I known that the audience you applied for had no other object than to speak to me of these things I certainly should have found some excuse to break through the established rule, and escape from such objurgations." But on my representing to him the object of my calling, and telling him that he was positively bound to listen not only to what an ambassador of Your Majesty, but the commonest mortal, had to say to him in a case of this sort, and the courteous and humane manner in which you had always treated his ambassadors, he was obliged to retract, and said that as regarded the commission granted to the two cardinals he could not deny that he himself had applied for it, but that was, he said, under a promise made by the Pope that the cause should never be revoked [from England]; but since His Holiness withdrew all the commissions he had previously given, he (the King) did likewise reject the offer to have the case tried and sentenced in a neutral place, for he wished it to be determined here and not elsewhere. As to his consent to the Queen's (age 47) appeal he had only given it conditionally, and provided the statutes and constitutions of the kingdom allowed of it, not otherwise, and said that lately a prohibitive one had been made in Parliament which the Queen (age 47) herself, as an English subject, was bound to obey. Hearing this I could not help observing that laws and constitutions had no retroactive power, and that they could only be enforced in the future. As to the Queen (age 47) being an English subject I owned that she being his legitimate wife was really and truly such, and that consequently all debate about constitutions and appeals was not only superfluous but out of the question; but that if the Queen (age 47), however, was, as he asserted, not his wife, she could not be called an English subject, for she only resided in this country in virtue of her marriage, not otherwise, and Common Law establishes that the claimant is to bring his action before the tribunal of the country whereof the defendant is a native. The Queen (age 47) might as well ask to have her case tried in Spain, but this she had never attempted, contenting herself that the court to which he himself had firstly applied as claimant should take cognizance of the affair, that being the only true and irrefragable tribunal in her case. And upon his replying that he had not sent for her, and that his brother, the prince of Wales, had first taken her to wife and consummated marriage, I remarked that if he himself had not sent for her he had after his brother's demise kept her by him, and prevented her from going away at the request of her father, the Catholic king of Spain, through his ambassador at this court, Hernand Duque de Estrada, as I could prove by his letters. These, however, the King (age 41) refused to peruse, and again repeated: "She must have patience and obey the laws of this kingdom." Then he added that Your Majesty in return for so many services and favours had done him the greatest possible injury by hindering his new marriage, and preventing his having male succession. That the Queen (age 47) was no more his wife than she was mine, and that he would act in this business just as he pleased, in spite of all opposition and grumbling, and that if Your Majesty capriciously attempted to cause him annoyance he would try to defend himself with the help of his friends.

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

Lastly, upon my urging upon him that his marriage had been pre-arranged by the King, his father [Henry VII.], and by the Catholic king of Spain [Ferdinand], both of whom were the wisest of their age, and would have never consented to it had there been the least shade of scruple respecting Prince Arthur - which after all was the principal ground of complaint - he again insisted on his determination to act as he pleased in the matter without attending to considerations of any sort whatever, adding that you yourself had shewn him the way to disobey the Pope's injunctions by your appealing four years ago to a future Council. Upon which I told him that he himself could not do better than follow your example and appeal to that very Council, and since he alleged that he was ready to imitate you in this respect, I must warn him that no prince in the world had more respect than you had for His Holiness, or deeper fear of his excommunications, for upon one occasion you had been one whole Holy Week without attending Divine service.

These last words of mine had great effect upon the King (age 41), who no doubt thought that I meant to reproach him for not having obeyed the Papal excommunication and interdict once fulminated against him; he, therefore, was a little hurt and said to me in rather an angry tone of voice: "If you go on like that you will make me lose my temper." I begged him to tell me how I could have offended him, warmly protesting that I had no such intention; then he lowered his voice a little and spoke less harshly, though, notwithstanding all my entreaties, he would never say how or in what I had offended him, and I must say that the rest of our conference passed without any visible signs of ill-humour on his part.

Thus encouraged I asked him whether in the event of Spaniards and Flemings, as good Christians, refusing for fear of the Papal interdict to hold communication, or carry on trade with his subjects, they would be amenable to the penalties described in the statute, and what sort of crime could be imputed to them. He remained for a while thoughtful and startled, not knowing what to answer, which being observed by me I preferred asking leave to retire to remaining where I was and waiting for his answer. I, therefore, said to him: "If such be the state of things I will not trouble Your Highness any more and lose my time; I will withdraw." He then said "adieu" to me in a gracious manner, but retained Hesdin, to whom he addressed the following words; "You have heard what the Emperor's ambassador has just said respecting the Papal excommunication and the stopping of trade between my subjects and the Spaniards and Flemings; but I can tell you that the ecclesiastical censures do not on this occasion fall upon me, but upon the Emperor himself who has so long opposed me, and prevented my new marriage, thus making me live in sin and against the prescriptions of Mother Church. The excommunication, moreover, is of such a nature that the Pope himself could not raise it without my consent; but, pray, do not mention this to the ambassador." This will give Your Majesty an idea of the King's blindness in these matters. Hesdin only replied that the affair was of too much importance for him to mix himself up with it.

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

We both returned [to London] without accepting the pressing invitation to dinner from the earl of Wulchier (age 56) (Wiltshire) who in the absence of the duke of Norfolk was to preside at the table.

Catherine Aragon Demoted to Princess

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

On Wednesday the said Duke (age 60), and the others of whom I wrote to Your Majesty in my last despatch, called upon the Queen (age 47) and delivered their message, which was in substance as follows: "She was to renounce her title of Queen, and allow her case to be decided here, in England. If she did, she would confer a great boon on the kingdom and prevent much effusion of blood, and besides the King (age 41) would treat her in future much better than she could possibly expect." Perceiving that there was no chance of the Queen's (age 47) agreeing to such terms, the deputies further told her that they came in the King's name to inform her that resistance was useless (quelle se rompist plus la teste), since his marriage with the other Lady had been effected more than two months ago in the presence of several persons, without any one of them having been summoned for that purpose. Upon which, with much bowing and ceremony, and many excuses for having in obedience to the king's commands fulfilled so disagreeable a duty, the deputies withdrew. After whose departure the lord Mountjoy (age 55), the Queen's (age 47) chamberlain, came to notify to her the King's intention that in future she should not be called Queen, and that from one month after Easter the King (age 41) would no longer provide for her personal expenses or the wages of her servants. He intended her to retire to some private house of her own, and there live on the small allowance assigned to her, and which, I am told, will scarcely be sufficient to cover the expenses of her household for the first quarter of next year. The Queen (age 47) resolutely said that as long as she lived she would entitle herself Queen; as to keeping house herself, she cared not to begin that duty so late in life. If the King (age 41) thought that her expenses were too great, he might, if he chose, take her own personal property and place her wherever he chose, with a confessor, a physician, an apothecary, and two maids for the service of her chamber; if that even seemed too much to ask, and there was nothing left for her and her servants to live upon, she would willingly go about the world begging alms for the love of God.

Though the King (age 41) is by nature kind and generously inclined, this Anne has so perverted him that he does not seem the same man. It is, therefore, to be feared that unless Your Majesty applies a prompt remedy to this evil, the Lady (age 32) will not relent in her persecution until she actually finishes with Queen Catharine (age 47), as she did once with cardinal Wolsey, whom she did not hate half as much. The Queen (age 47), however, is not afraid for herself; what she cares most for is the Princess (age 17).

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

The name and title which the King (age 41) wishes the Queen (age 47) to take, and by which he orders the people to call her, is the old dowager princess (la vielle et vefve princesse). As to princess Mary (age 17) no title has yet been given to her, and I fancy they will wait to settle that until the Lady (age 32) has been confined (que la dame aye faict lenfant).

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

After this, coming to the principal object of my visit, I told him plainly that, although for several days past I had heard of the attempt made both at the convocation of the prelates and in Parliament to impugn the Queen's (age 47) rights, and greatly injure her just cause, I had taken no notice of the facts, inasmuch as I could not be persuaded that so wise, virtuous, and Catholic a prince could possibly authorize or sanction such things, and also because I thought and believed that such practices (menees) could in no wise impair the Queen's (age 47) right or cause her harm. Yet that having lately been apprized from various quarters that such an attempt was really being made, I considered that I could not acquit myself of my duty towards God, towards Your Imperial Majesty, and towards himself if I did not remonstrate at once against such behaviour, and entreat him by his virtue, wisdom, and humanity patiently to listen to my observations as proceeding from my desire for his service, for that though he might disregard and despise man, he would at least respect God. To which the King (age 41) answered that so he had done, and that God and his conscience were perfectly agreed on that point.

Hearing the King (age 41) express himself in this manner and wishing to bring him back to the subject as gently as possible, I observed that my colleague and I could not but be very much flattered at the familiar way in which he had expressed his sentiments, as if we were his own servants, which sentiments, I added, proceeded no doubt from his heart not from his mouth. He assured me, however, that such was not the case, and that what he had just said had been said without dissimulation. Upon which I again said to him that I could not believe that Christianity, being so agitated and troubled by heresies, he could possibly set so bad an example and contravene the treaties of peace and amity which, as he himself, who had been the principal promoter and mediator in them ought to know best, had cost so much time and trouble to make. He ought to know that even supposing no inconvenience arose therefrom in his lifetime there would be most serious ones after his death with regard to the succession. There had never been such a case, I continued, nor did we read of it in history, as for a prince to divorce his legitimate wife after five and twenty years, and marry another woman. Not knowing what to answer to my observations, the King (age 41) gladly seized the opportunity which I gave him by this last statement to contradict me, and said: "Not so long, if you please; and if the world finds this new marriage of mine strange, I find it still more so that the Pope [Julius] should have granted a dispensation for the former." I then mentioned to him five popes who had dispensed in similar cases, and declared that I was unwilling to dispute that matter with him, but that there was no doctor in his kingdom, who after such a debate would not confess that pope Julius was authorized to dispense in the case. After this, coming to speak about the manner in which his solicitors had procured the votes of the university of Paris, on which he founds his principal argument, I offered to produce the letters I had received relating the whole affair, as well as the names of those who had held for the Queen (age 47), but he said there was no necessity at all for that. I, moreover, told him that neither in Spain, nor in Naples, nor in any other country could one single prelate or doctor be found to assert the contrary, and that even in his own kingdom every canonist and lawyer was of the same opinion, with the exception of the few who had been gained over to the other side, and I proposed, in confirmation of my statement, to exhibit other letters, which he likewise refused to see.

At last, wishing to turn the conversation, the King (age 41) said that he wished to ensure the succession to his kingdom by having children, which he had not at present, and upon my remarking to him that he had one daughter, the most virtuous and accomplished that could be thought of, just of suitable age to be married and get children, and that it seemed as if Nature had decided that the succession to the English throne should be through the female line, as he himself had obtained it, and therefore, that he could by marrying the Princess to some one secure the succession he was so anxious for, he replied that he knew better than that; and would marry again in order to have children himself. And upon my observing to him that he could not be sure of that he asked me three times running: "Am I not a man like others?" and he afterwards added: "I need not give proofs of the contrary, or let you into my secrets," no doubt implying thereby that his beloved Lady (age 32) is already in the family way.

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

A deputation of English merchants trading with Flanders went on Friday last to see the King (age 41) for the purpose of ascertaining whether they could in future ship goods for that country. They were told that the King (age 41) was not at war with Your Majesty, and that they might trade or not just as they pleased; those who had any scruple might remain at home; those who chose to go on with their trade might do so. Not-withstanding which answer there is hardly any English or foreign merchants having goods in Flanders who has not sent for them, or had them put under another name (les couvrir), for there is hardly one who does not consider himself lost and ruined, and would not wish himself far off with his goods and substance. Indeed this fear is not confined to the merchants, but pervades all classes of society, and I have been told that Cramuel (age 48) (Cromwell), who is perhaps the man who has most influence with the King (age 41) just now, has had all his treasure and valuables removed to the Tower of London. And I do really believe that neither the King (age 41) himself nor any of his courtiers is exempt from fear, both of the people and of Your Majesty; yet it would seem as if God Almighty has blinded them, and taken away their senses, for they are perfectly bewildered and know not what to be at, nor how to mend their affairs. Indeed this is so much the case, that should the least mishap overtake them they would be so disconcerted that neither the King (age 41) nor his counsellors would think of aught else than flight, knowing very well the people's will in these matters.

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

About a week ago the sieur de Rochefort (age 30) (George Boleyn) returned from France with the sieur de Beauvoes (Beauvoir), who started yesterday for Scotland for the purpose of inducing king James to place his differences with this King (age 41) into his master's hand, and making him judge and arbiter of their differences. I have been told by a very worthy man that the duke of Albany's secretary returning from a visit to the said Beaulvoys (sic) had assured him that the said ambassador would be unable to accomplish his mission in Scotland, and that war would go on fiercer than ever. Indeed it would seem as if the Scots at this moment more prosperous than ever, for instead of being as before on the defensive, they are continually making raids on the borders. For this purpose did Mr. de Rocchefort (age 30) go to France as it is now ascertained. These people, as I am told, wish immensely for peace with Scotland, but God, as I said above, has taken away their senses, and they cannot see how to bring it about. The said Mr. de Rocchefort (age 30), as his own servants assert, has been presented in France with 2,000 crs., no doubt for the good tidings of his sister's (age 32) marriage, to whom the Most Christian King has now written a letter addressing her as Queen. I fancy, moreover, that the French consider this good news, firstly: because it is likely to be the means of breaking off the friendship between Your Majesty and this king, and also, because it might ultimately be the cause of freeing the French from their debt and payment of pensions, either through sheer necessity, or for fear these people may have of their ultimately joining you, should the Pope proceed to sentence the case and have the censures executed-a thing which, in my opinion, Your Majesty ought to urge in every possible way-the French would be released from all their bonds and pecuniary obligations to this king.

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

Every day numbers of people come to my hotel and inquire from my servants and neighbours how long I intend remaining here in London, for until the hour of my departure many will go on thinking that Your Majesty consents to this marriage, without which condition no one thinks that this King (age 41) would have dared to proceed to such extremities. For this cause I think I ought to be immediately recalled, and most humbly beseech Your Majesty to send the order; not so much to avoid the dangers and troubles that may supervene, for I should consider myself happy to sacrifice my life for the Imperial service, but merely for the above-named considerations, &c.-London, 15th April 1533.

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

On Saturday, the eve of Easter, Lady Anne (age 32) went to mass in truly Royal state, loaded with diamonds and other precious stones, and dressed in a gorgeous suit of tissue, the train of which was carried by the daughter (age 14) of the duke of Norfolk (age 60), betrothed to the Duke of Richmond (age 13). She was followed by numerous damsels, and conducted to and from the church [Map] with the same or perhaps greater ceremonies and solemnities than those used with former Queens on such occasions. She has now changed her title of marchioness for that of Queen, and preachers specially name her so in their church prayers. At which all people here are perfectly astonished, for the whole thing seems a dream, and even those who support her party do not know whether to laugh or cry at it. The King (age 41) is watching what sort of mien the people put on at this, and solicits his nobles to visit and pay their court to his new Queen, whom he purposes to have crowned after Easter in the most solemn manner, and it is said that there will be banqueting and tournaments on the occasion. Indeed some think that Clarence, the king-at-arms who left for France four days ago, is gone for the purpose of inviting knights for the tournament in imitation of the Most Christian King when he celebrated his own nuptials. I cannot say whether the coronation will take place before or after these festivities, but I am told that this King (age 41) has secretly arranged with the archbishop of Canterbury (age 43), that in virtue of his office, and without application from anyone he is to summon him before his court as having two wives, upon which, without sending for the Queen (age 47), he (the Archbishop) will declare that the King (age 41) can lawfully marry again, as he has done, without waiting for a dispensation, for a sentence from the Pope, or any other declaration whatever.

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

The King (age 41) has this very day dispatched a courier to Rome. I fancy it is for the purpose of telling the Pope that whatever has been attempted in this Parliament against him and his authority has been done at the solicitation of his people, not at his own, and that should his new marriage be ratified and sanctioned he is ready to revoke everything. He has forbidden the courier to carry any other letters but his, that the truth may not be found out. Your Majesty, however, might tell His Holiness how matters stand, and urge him to sentence the case and make all other necessary provisions.

Calendars. 15 Apr 1533. 1061. Eustace Chapuys (age 43) to the Emperor (age 33).

On Tuesday the 7th inst., having been informed of the strange and outrageous conduct and proceedings of this king (age 41) against the Queen (age 47), whereof I have written to Your Majesty, I went to Court at the hour appointed for the King's audience, that I might there duly remonstrate against the Queen's treatment. I took with me Mr. Hesdin, who by the consent of the Queen [of Hungary] is now here to claim the arrears of his pension, in order that he might be present, and hear the remonstrances I had to address the King (age 41), hoping also that if I had to use threatening language the King (age 41) might not be so much offended if uttered in the presence of the said Hesdin. On my arrival at Greenwich [Map] the earl of Vulchier (age 56) (Wiltshire) came to meet me, and leading me to the apartments of the duke of Norfolk (age 60), who had just gone to see the Queen (age 47), said to me that the King (age 41) being very much engaged at that hour had deputed him to listen to what I had to say, and report thereupon. My answer was that my communication was of such a nature and so important that I could not possibly make it to anyone but to the King (age 41) in person. Until now he had never refused me audience, or put me off, and I could not think that he would now break through the custom without my having given him any occasion for it, especially as the King (age 41) knew that Your Majesty most willingly received the English ambassadors at all hours, whatever might be their errand or business. The Earl (age 56) repeated his excuses, and seemed at first disinclined to take my answer back to the King (age 41), until at last, perceiving my firm determination, he went in and came back saying the King (age 41) would see me immediately, though he still tried to ascertain what my business was, and advised me to put off my communication until after the festivals. It was settled at last that I should see the King (age 41) on Thursday in Holy Week, on which day having about me a copy of my last despatch [to Your Majesty], I took again the road to Court, accompanied as before by the said Master Hesdin, and was introduced to the Royal presence by the same earl of Wiltshire (age 56). The King (age 41) received us graciously enough. After the usual salutations and inquiries about Your Majesty's health, the King (age 41) asked me what news I had of your movements. I answered that the letters I had received last were rather old, but that I had reason to believe you had already embarked to return to Spain at the beginning of this present month. This statement the King (age 41) easily believed, and was rejoiced to hear (such is his wish to see you fairly out of Italy). I added that the weather for the last days could not have been more favourable, and therefore that it was to be hoped Your Majesty had reached Spain in safety. Having then asked me whether I had other news to communicate, I told him that your brother, the king of the Romans (age 30), had made his peace with the Turk, and that the latter had sent an embassy, at which piece of intelligence the King (age 41) remained for some time in silent astonishment as if he did not know what to answer.

Letters and Papers 1535. 01 Jan 1535. Vienna Archives. 1. Chapuys (age 45) to Charles V.

There is little to write, but as a messenger is going, must mention that, as no reply has come from the Emperor, and Darcy had not yet been able to get leave to retire to his country, Chapuys had refrained (je me suis deppousché) from sending to him, considering the danger of any intelligence between them being detected. Nor did Darcy send anyone to Chapuys till three days ago, when he sent a priest of his, who comes from Hainault, for news, saying that there was nothing he desired more than to speak with me when he should have got leave to retire to his country. He sent by the priest a handsome sword as a present, which I fancy was to indicate indirectly that times were ripe "pour jouer des couteaulx1." I am the more inclined to believe in a hidden meaning, because he had long before sent me a gold pensée, well enamelled, begging me to keep it.

Note 1. to play knives

From Feb 1535 Margaret "Madge" Shelton was believed to have been a mistress of King Henry VIII of England and Ireland (age 43). Eustace Chapuys (age 45) refers to "Mistress Shelton". Others have suggested "Mistress Shelton" could be Madge's sister Mary Shelton (age 25).

Letters and Papers 1535. 13 Dec 1535. Vatican Archives. 970. Bishop of Faenza to M. Ambrogio.

* * * Understands that they have not the last resolutions which they expected from England. Mons. Brien, who is still here, is about to depart. The old queen of England has been very near death, but now recovered. Understands from the English ambassador (age 45) here, who is a good man though he serves the King, hostile to all that pleases the new Queen, and a good servant of the old Queen (age 49), whose "creatura" his wife is, that she cannot live more than six months or a little longer, which he has heard from her physician, a Spaniard, who has told her in secret of it. Believes it to be true, because it grieves the ambassador to the heart. Conjectures, from what the French king and his lords have said, that her condition is known to them, and they hope that at her death the King will leave his present Queen, return to the obedience of the Church, and marry Francis' eldest daughter, whom they would not give to the Scotch king, nor any other, and that the Dauphin should have the King's legitimate daughter. These, however, are conjectures, and he may be mistaken. Sora, 13 Dec. 1535.

Ital., p. 1,from a modern copy.

There is another modern copy in M.S. Add. 8715, f. 161 b., B.M.

Death of Catherine of Aragon

Letters 1536. 09 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 59. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Just after having finished my last letter of 30 Dec. I mounted horse to go with all possible haste "selon la grande compagnie que menvoie" to see the Queen (deceased). On my arrival she called roe at once, and that it might not be supposed her sickness was feigned and also because there was a friend of Cromwell's whom the King had sent to accompany me, or rather to spy and note all that was said and done, the Queen thought best, with my consent, that my conductor and the principal persons of the house, such as the chamberlain and steward, who had not seen her for more than a year, and several others, should be at our first interview. After I had kissed hands she took occasion to thank me for the numerous services I had done her hitherto and the trouble I had taken to come and see her, a thing that she had very ardently desired, thinking that my coming would be salutary for her, and, at all events, if it pleased God to take her, it would be a consolation to her to die under my guidance (entre mes braz) and not unprepared, like a beast. I gave her every hope, both of her health and otherwise, informing her of the offers the King had made me of what houses she would, and to cause her to be paid the remainder of certain arrears, adding, for her further consolation, that the King was very sorry for her illness; and on this I begged her to take heart and get well, if for no other consideration, because the union and peace of Christendom depended upon her life. To show this I used many arguments, as had been prearranged with another person between the Queen and me, in order that my conductor and some of the bystanders might make report of it, so that by this means they might have the greater care of her life. After some other conversation, the Queen bade me rest after the fatigue of the journey, and meanwhile she thought she could sleep a little, which she had not done for two hours altogether during the six days previous. Shortly afterwards she sent for me again, and I spent full two hours in conversation with her, and though I several times wished to leave her for fear of wearying her, I could not do so, she said it was so great a pleasure and consolation. I spent the same period of time with her every day of the four days I staid there. She inquired about the health of your Majesty and the state of your affairs, and regretted her misfortune and that of the Princess, and the delay of remedy by which all good men had suffered in person and in goods, and so many ladies were going to perdition. But, on my showing her that your Majesty could not have done better than you had done hitherto, considering the great affairs which had hindered you, and also that the delay had not been without advantages (for, besides there being some hope that the French, who formerly solicited the favour of this King, would now turn their backs, there was this, that the Pope, by reason of the death of the cardinal of Rochester, and other disorders, intended to seek a remedy in the name of the Holy See, and thus, preparations being made at the instance of the Holy See, the King could not blame her as the cause), she was quite satisfied and thought the delay had been for the best. And as to the heresies here [I said] she knew well that God said there must of necessity be heresies and slanders for the exaltation of the good and confusion of the wicked, and that she must consider that the heresies were not so rooted here that they would not soon be remedied, and that it was to be hoped that those who had been deluded would afterwards be the most firm, like St. Peter after he had tripped. of these words she showed herself very glad, for she had previously had some scruple of conscience because [the heresies] had arisen from her affair.

Having staid there four days, and seeing that she began to take a little sleep, and also that her stomach retained her food, and that she was better than she had been, she thought, and her physician agreed with her (considering her out of danger), that I should return, so as not to abuse the licence the King had given me, and also to request the King to give her a more convenient house, as he had promised me at my departure. I therefore took leave of her on Tuesday evening, leaving her very cheerful; and that evening I saw her laugh two or three times, and about half an hour after I left her she desired to have some pastime (soy recreer) with one of my men "que fait du plaisant." On Wednesday morning one of her chamber told me that she had slept better. Her physician confirmed to me again his good hope of her health, and said I need not fear to leave, for, if any new danger arose, he would inform me with all diligence. Thereupon I started, and took my journey at leisure, lest any further news should overtake me on the road; but none came. This morning I sent to Cromwell to know when I could have audience of the King his master to thank him for the good cheer he had caused to be shown me in my journey, and also to speak about the said house. He sent to inform me of the lamentable news of the death of the most virtuous Queen, which took place on Friday the morrow of the Kings, about 2 p.m. This has been the most cruel news that could come to me, especially as I fear the good Princess will die of grief, or that the concubine (age 35) will hasten what she has long threatened to do, viz., to kill her; and it is to be feared that there is little help for it. I will do my best to comfort her, in which a letter from your Majesty would help greatly. I cannot relate in detail the circumstances of the Queen's decease, nor how she has disposed of her affairs, for none of her servants has yet come. I know not if they have been detained.

This evening, on sending to tell (qu. ask?) Cromwell what they had determined to do, that I might for my part do my duty, he told my man that just as he was entering the gate he had dispatched one of his own to inform me, on the part of the King and Council, that it was determined to give her a very solemn and honorable funeral both on account of her virtue and as having been wife of Prince Arthur, and, moreover, for her lineage and relationship to your Majesty, and that, if I wished to be present, the King would send me some black cloth for myself and my servants, but that the time and place had not yet been arranged. I replied that, presuming that everything would be done duly, I agreed to be present, and that, as to the cloth, the King need not trouble himself about it, for I was provided. It is certain that they will not perform her exequies as Queen, but only as Princess, and for this reason I despatch in haste to Flanders one of my servants who will have time to go and come, that I may know how to conduct myself, for nothing will be done for 18 or 20 days. The Queen's illness began about five weeks ago, as I then wrote to your Majesty, and the attack was renewed on the morrow of Christmas day. It was a pain in the stomach, so violent that she could retain no food. I asked her physician several times if there was any suspicion of poison. He said he was afraid it was so, for after she had drunk some Welsh beer she had been worse, and that it must have been a slow and subtle poison1 for he could not discover evidences of simple and pure poison; but on opening her, indications will be seen. London, 9 Jan. 1535. Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 4.

Note 1. "Poison aterminec (qu. atermoiee ?) et artificieuse."

Letters 1536. 09 Jan 1536. Add. MS. 28,588, f. 114. B. M. 60. Chapuys (age 46) to Ortiz.

Received on the 29th ult. the Emperor's letter of the 3rd ult., and with them, the [account of the] receptions given to the Emperor in Micina and Naples.

Hearing that the Queen was very ill, went to ask the King for leave to visit her, which he obtained, with some trouble. Set off as soon as possible. Found that the Queen had been troubled with vomiting and pain in the stomach for a week, being unable to eat or sleep, except so little that it might be called nothing. She was so wasted that she could not support herself either on her feet or sitting in bed. During four days that he was with her she got better, and seemed to be much comforted by his visit. She did not cease to tell him that he had served her well, and shown the affection for her service, which she knew that he felt. She desired him to return and solicit her removal, in which the physician concurred, thinking her out of danger for the time. Returned as she wished, and to-day news came to the King that on the third day after his departure she had a relapse and died in twelve hours, which was the day before yesterday, Friday the 7th, at 2 p.m. Feels it deeply, and hopes the same fate will not happen to the Princess. Will not now mention what her Highness said, and her last wishes. Refers to his letter to Cifuentes. London, 9 Jan. 1536. Sp., pp. 3. Modern copy.

Calendars. 21 Jan 1536. Eustace Chapuys (age 46) to the Emperor (age 35).

The good Queen (deceased) breathed her last at 2 o'clock in the afternoon. Eight hours afterwards, by the King's (age 44) express commands, the inspection of her body was made, without her confessor or physician or any other officer of her household being present, save the fire-lighter in the house, a servant of his, and a companion of the latter, who proceeded at once to open the body. Neither of them had practised chirurgy, and yet they had often performed the same operation, especially the principal or head of them, who, after making the examination, went to the Bishop of Llandaff, the Queen's confessor, and declared to him in great secrecy, and as if his life depended on it, that he had found the Queen's (deceased) body and the intestines perfectly sound and healthy, as if nothing had happened, with the single exception of the heart, which was completely black, and of a most hideous aspect; after washing it in three different waters, and finding that it did not change colour, he cut it in two, and found that it was the same inside, so much so that after being washed several times it never changed colour. The man also said that he found inside the heart something black and round, which adhered strongly to the concavities. And moreover, after this spontaneous declaration on the part of the man, my secretary having asked the Queen's physician whether he thought the Queen (deceased) had died of poison, the latter answered that in his opinion there was no doubt about it, for the bishop had been told so under confession, and besides that, had not the secret been revealed, the symptoms, the course, and the fatal end of her illness were a proof of that.

No words can describe the joy and delight which this King (age 44) and the promoters of his concubinate (age 35) have felt at the demise of the good Queen (deceased), especially the earl of Vulcher (age 59), and his son (age 33), who must have said to themselves, What a pity it was that the Princess (age 19) had not kept her mother (deceased) company. The King (age 44) himself on Saturday, when he received the news, was heard to exclaim, "Thank God, we are now free from any fear of war, and the time has come for dealing with the French much more to our advantage than heretofore, for if they once suspect my becoming the Emperor's friend and ally now that the real cause of our enmity no longer exists I shall be able to do anything I like with them." On the following day, which was Sunday, the King (age 44) dressed entirely in yellow from head to foot, with the single exception of a white feather in his cap. His bastard daughter (age 2) was triumphantly taken to church to the sound of trumpets and with great display. Then, after dinner, the King (age 44) went to the hall, where the ladies were dancing, and there made great demonstration of joy, and at last went into his own apartments, took the little bastard (age 2), carried her in his (age 44) arms, and began to show her first to one, then to another, and did the same on the following days. Since then his joy has somewhat subsided; he has no longer made such demonstrations, but to make up for it, as it were, has been tilting and running lances at Grinduys [Map]. On the other hand, if I am to believe the reports that come to me from every quarter, I must say that the displeasure and grief generally felt at the Queen's (deceased) demise is really incredible, as well as the indignation of the people against the King (age 44). All charge him with being the cause of the Queen's (deceased) death, which I imagine has been produced partly by poison and partly by despondency and grief; besides which, the joy which the King (age 44) himself, as abovesaid, manifested upon hearing the news, has considerably confirmed people in that belief.

Great preparations are being made for the burial of the good Queen (deceased), and according to a message received from Master Cromwell (age 51) the funeral is to be conducted with such a pomp and magnificence that those present will scarcely believe their eyes. It is to take place on the 1st of February; the chief mourner to be the King's own niece (age 18), that is to say, the daughter of the duke of Suffolk (age 52); next to her will go the Duchess, her mother; then the wife of the duke of Norfolk (age 39), and several other ladies in great numbers. And from what I hear, it is intended to distribute mourning apparel to no less than 600 women of a lower class. As to the lords and gentlemen, nothing has yet transpired as to who they are to be, nor how many. Master Cromwell (age 51) himself, as I have written to Your Majesty (age 35), pressed me on two different occasions to accept the mourning cloth, which this King (age 44) offered for the purpose no doubt of securing my attendance at the funeral, which is what he greatly desires; but by the advice of the Queen Regent of Flanders (Mary), of the Princess herself, and of many other worthy personages, I have declined, and, refused the cloth proffered; alleging as an excuse that I was already prepared, and had some of it at home, but in reality because I was unwilling to attend a funeral, which, however costly and magnificent, is not that befitting a Queen of England.

The King (age 44), or his Privy Council, thought at first that very solemn obsequies ought to be performed at the cathedral church of this city. Numerous carpenters and other artizans had already set to work, but since then the order has been revoked, and there is no talk of it now. Whether they meant it in earnest, and then changed their mind, or whether it was merely a feint to keep people contented and remove suspicion, I cannot say for certain.

Letters 1536. 21 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 141. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

You could not conceive the joy that the King and those who favor this concubinage have shown at the death of the good Queen, especially the earl of Wiltshire (age 59) and his son (age 33), who said it was a pity the Princess (age 19) did not keep company with her. The King, on the Saturday he heard the news, exclaimed "God be praised that we are free from all suspicion of war"; and that the time had come that he would manage the French better than he had done hitherto, because they would do now whatever he wanted from a fear lest he should ally himself again with your Majesty, seeing that the cause which disturbed your friendship was gone. On the following day, Sunday, the King was clad all over in yellow, from top to toe, except the white feather he had in his bonnet, and the Little Bastard (age 2) was conducted to mass with trumpets and other great triumphs. After dinner the King entered the room in which the ladies danced, and there did several things like one transported with joy. At last he sent for his Little Bastard (age 2), and carrying her in his arms he showed her first to one and then to another. He has done the like on other days since, and has run some courses (couru quelques lances) at Greenwich.From all I hear the grief of the people at this news is incredible, and the indignation they feel against the King, on whom they lay the blame of her death, part of them believing it was by poison and others by grief; and they are the more indignant at the joy the King has exhibited. This would be a good time, while the people are so indignant, for the Pope to proceed to the necessary remedies, by which these men would be all the more taken by surprise, as they have no suspicion of any application being made for them now that the Queen is dead, and do not believe that the Pope dare take upon him to make war especially while a good part of Germany and other Princes are in the same predicament. Nevertheless, now that the Queen is dead, it is right for her honor and that of all her kin that she be declared to have died Queen, and it is right especially to proceed to the execution of the sentence, because it touches the Princess, and to dissolve this marriage which is no wise rendered valid by the Queen's death, and, if there be another thing, that he cannot have this woman to wife nor even any other during her life according to law, unless the Pope give him a dispensation; and it appears that those here have some hope of drawing the Pope to their side, for only three days ago Cromwell said openly at table that a legate might possibly be seen here a few days hence, who would come to confirm all their business, and yesterday commands were issued to the curates and other preachers not to preach against purgatory, images, or adoration of the saints, or other doubtful questions until further orders. Perhaps by this means and others they hope to lull his Holiness to sleep until your Majesty has parted from him, which would be a very serious and irremediable evil. I think those here will have given charge to the courier, whom they despatched in great haste to give the news of the Queen's death in France, to go on to Rome in order to prevent the immediate publication of censures.

Letters 1536. 29 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 200. Chapuys (age 46) to Granvelle.

Cannot thank him sufficiently for his kindness, which quite overwhelms him As he writes to the Emperor, thinks the enterprise extremely difficult and almost impossible; yet persons who understand matters better than himself think it would not be difficult, for the whole people cries after the Emperor. Many suspect that if the Queen died by poison it was Gregory di Casale who sent it by a kinsman, of Modena, named Gorron, who came hither in haste, and by what he told me the night before he returned, he had come to obtain letters in behalf of the Prothonotary Casale. He said the King and Cromwell would speak to me about it, but they have not done so. Those who suspect this say the said Gregory must have earned somehow the 8 ducats a day the King gave him, and to get a slow poison which should leave no trace, they had sent for him (lavoyent envoye querre la), which Chapuys cannot easily believe, as there would be too great danger of its being made known. London, 29 Jan. 1535.

Letters 1536. 29 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 199. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Some days ago I was informed from various quarters, which I did not think very good authorities, that notwithstanding the joy shown by the concubine (age 35) at the news of the good Queen's death, for which she had given a handsome present to the messenger, she had frequently wept, fearing that they might do with her as with the good Queen. This morning I have heard from the lady (age 33) mentioned in my letters of the 5th November1, and from her husband (age 40), that they were informed by one of the principal persons at Court that this King had said to some one in great confidence, and as it were in confession, that he had made this marriage, seduced by witchcraft, and for this reason he considered it null; and that this was evident because God did not permit them to have any male issue, and that he believed that he might take another wife, which he gave to understand that he had some wish to do. The thing is very difficult for me to believe, although it comes from a good source. I will watch to see if there are any indications of its probability. Yet I have not forborne to give some little hint of it by a third hand to the Princess' gouvernante (age 60), so as to warn her to treat the Princess a little better; and I have advised the latter to be as familiar as possible with her gouvernante (age 60) so as to make her feel that when the Princess comes to her estate she will not regard her with disfavor.

Note 1. The Marchioness of Exeter (age 33). See Vol. IX., No. 776.

Letters 1536. Vienna Archives. 142. Chapuys to Granvelle.

Thanks him for 3,000 ducats. Expresses his great obligations to Granvelle, who has made him what he is. Excuses himself for not having written lately, which was owing to haste, a slight indisposition, and the trouble occasioned by the death of the Queen, who certainly was very grateful to Granvelle for his good services. Among the last words she said, she made her excuse to his Majesty and you, and also to the comendador mayor, that she had not been able to write, and that I should beg his Majesty and request you too on her part one way or other to finish her business; for the slowness of the remedy and the gentleness shown to those here would destroy her and her daughter, and throw all the kingdom into confusion. The said Queen has not been able to give you proof of her good will, but the Princess, if she lives, will accomplish it, being well informed of your good services to her mother and her.

I have just been told there was some rumour that this King and the king of Scots were to have an interview on the frontiers about Easter. I do not attach much importance to it, because if it were so, the Scotch ambassador would have told me something of it. I have not been inclined to talk much of late days, and I refer you to my long letters to his Majesty. London, 21 Jan. 1535.

P.S.—I had arranged with the Queen's physician that whenever her life should be in danger she should be reminded to affirm in extremis that she had never been known by Prince Arthur, but he forgot it in his grief and trouble. It is suspected that the poison came from Italy, as I shall write to you shortly, but I do not believe it. Fr. From a modern copy, pp. 2.

Funeral of Catherine of Aragon

Letters 1536. 21 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 141. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Great preparation is made for the Queen's burial, which, as Cromwell sent to inform me, will be so magnificent that even those who see it all will hardly believe it. It is to take place on the 1st February. The chief mourner will be the King's niece (age 17), daughter of the Duke of Suffolk (age 52); the Duchess of Suffolk (age 16) will be the second; the third will be the wife of the Duke of Norfolk's son. of others there will be a great multitude; I think they mean to dress in mourning about 600 persons. Nothing is said yet of the lords who are to be present. Cromwell again, since I wrote to your Majesty, has twice sent to press on my acceptance the mourning cloth which the King wished to give me, and would gladly by this means bind me to be present at the interment, which the King greatly desires, but following the advice of the Queen Regent in Flanders, of the Princess, and of several good personages, I will not go, since they do not mean to bury her as Queen. I have refused the said cloth, saying simply that I did not do it of any ill intention, but only because I was already provided. The King had intended, or those of his Council, that solemn exequies should be made at the Cathedral Church of this city, and a number of carpenters and others had already been set to work to make preparations, but, since then, the whole thing has been broken off; I do not know if it was ever sincerely intended, or if it was only a pretence for the satisfaction of the people, to remove sinister opinions.

Letters 1536. 10 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 282. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Wrote on the 29th ult. The same day the Queen (deceased) was buried, and besides the ladies whom I mentioned, there were present four bishops and as many abbots, but no other man of mark except the comptroller of the King's Household. The place where she is buried in the church is far removed from the high altar, and much less honorable than that of certain bishops buried there; and even if they had not taken her for princess dowager as they have done in death and life, but only as simple baroness, they could not have given her a less honorable place, as I am told by men acquainted with those matters. Such are the great miracles and incredible magnificence which they gave me to understand they would put forth in honor of her memory as due alike to her great virtues and to her kindred. Possibly they will repair the fault by making a becoming monument in some suitable place.

Calendars. 17 Feb 1536. Eustace Chapuys (age 46) to the Emperor (age 35).

On that very day the good Queen of England's (deceased) burial took place, which was attended by four bishops and as many abbots, besides the ladies mentioned in my preceding despatches. No other person of rank or name was present except the comptroller of the Royal household. The place where she lies in the cathedral church of Peterborough [Map] is a good way from the high altar, and in a less honourable position than that of several bishops buried in the same church. Had she not been a dowager Princess, as they have held her both in life and death, but simply a Lady, they could not have chosen a less distinguished place of rest for her, as the people who understand this sort of thing tell me. Such have been the wonderful display and incredible magnificence which these people gave me to understand would be lavished in honour and memory of one whose great virtues and royal relationship certainly entitled her to uncommon honours.

Perhaps one of these days they will repair their fault, and erect a suitable. Monument or institute some pious foundation to her memory in some suitable spot or other.

Letters 1536. 21 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 141. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

My man has sent me from Flanders, where the Queen has kept him some days, your Majesty's letters of the 13th ult., to which I must delay replying till his return. I thank you for writing that I shall not be forgotten when the time of distribution of benefices arrives. Must not omit to say that the enterprise mentioned in the said letters is becoming more difficult every day, especially since the death of the Queen (deceased), as they have kept more company than before ("lon a tenu plus de court et en plus de regard que par avant"). I have also received your Majesty's letters of the 29th, with your most prudent discourse touching the perplexity of the affairs of the late good Queen (deceased) and of the Princess (age 19), the substance of which considerations, though not so well put, has been already at times communicated to the said ladies. Moreover, I added another point, viz., that what was chiefly to be feared, if they were compelled to swear all that the King wished (besides the bad effect mentioned in your Majesty's letters, that so many would lose heart and join the new heresy), the danger would be, not that the King would proceed by law to punish daily disobedience, but that, under color of perfect reconciliation, if he were to treat them well,—I don't suppose the King but the Concubine (age 35) (who has often sworn the death of both, and who will never be at rest till she has gained her end, suspecting that owing to the King's fickleness there is no stability in her position as long as either of the said ladies lives), will have even better means than before of executing her accursed purpose by administering poison, because they would be less on their guard; and, moreover, she might do it without suspicion, for it would be supposed when the said ladies had agreed to everything that the King wished and were reconciled and favorably treated after they had renounced their rights, there could be no fear of their doing any mischief, and thus no suspicion would arise of their having received foul play.

The King and Concubine (age 35), impatient of longer delay, especially as they saw that proceedings were taken at Rome in good earnest, and that when your Majesty goes thither the provisions will be enforced, determined to make an end of the Queen's process, as you will see by what follows. It must have been very convenient for them that she died before the Princess, for several reasons, and, among others, because it was at her instance that proceedings were taken at Rome, and because they had less hope of being able to bring her over to their opinions, reckoning more upon her constancy by reason of age than on that of her daughter, especially because, not being naturally subject to their laws, they could not constrain her by justice as they could her daughter. Further, I think the cupidity which governs them has led them more to anticipate the death of the mother, as they will not be obliged to restore the dowry.

Letters 1536. 21 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 141. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Now the King and Concubine (age 35) are planning in several ways to entangle the Princess in their webs, and compel her to consent to their damnable statutes and detestable opinions; and Cromwell was not ashamed, in talking with one of my men, to tell him you had no reason to profess so great grief for the death of the Queen, which he considered very convenient and advantageous for the preservation of friendship between your Majesty and his master; that henceforth we should communicate more freely together, and that nothing remained but to get the Princess to obey the will of the King, her father, in which he was assured I could aid more effectually than anybody else, and that by so doing I should not only gratify the King but do a very good office for the Princess, who on complying with the King's will would be better treated than ever. The Concubine (age 35), according to what the Princess sent to tell me, threw the first bait to her, and caused her to be told by her aunt, the gouvernante (age 60) of the said Princess, that if she would lay aside her obstinacy and obey her father, she would be the best friend to her in the world and be like another mother, and would obtain for her anything she could ask, and that if she wished to come to Court she would be exempted from holding the tail of her gown, "et si la meneroit tousjours a son cause" (?); and the said gouvernante (age 60) does not cease with hot tears to implore the said Princess to consider these matters; to which the Princess has made no other reply than that there was no daughter in the world who would be more obedient to her father in what she could do saving her honor and conscience.From what the Princess has sent to tell me, it seems probable that the King will shortly send to her a number of his councillors to summon her to give the oath. She requested me to notify to her what to reply, and I wrote that I thought she had best show as good courage and constancy as ever with requisite modesty and dignity (honesteté), for if they began to find her at all shaken they would pursue her to the end without ever leaving her in peace; and that I thought they would not insist very much on her renouncing her right openly, nor abjuring the authority of the Pope directly, but that they might press her to swear to the Concubine (age 35) as Queen, alleging that as the Queen was dead there could be no excuse for opposition. I wrote to her to use every effort to avoid any discussion with the King's deputies, beseeching them to leave her in peace that she might pray to God for the soul of the Queen, her mother, and also for His aid, and declaring that she was a poor and simple orphan without experience, aid, or counsel, that she did not understand laws or canons, and did not know how then to answer them; that she should also beseech them to intercede with the King, her father, to have pity on her weakness and ignorance; and, if she thought it necessary to say more, she might add that as it is not the custom to swear [fealty] here to Queens, and such a thing had not been done when her mother was held as Queen, she cannot but suspect that it would be directly or indirectly to her prejudice; also that if she (Anne Boleyn) was Queen, her swearing or refusing to swear did not matter, and likewise if she is not; and that she remembers well one thing,—that in the Consistorial sentence by which the first marriage had been declared valid, this second marriage was annulled, and it was declared that this lady could not claim the title of Queen, for which reason she thought in conscience that she could not go against the Pope's command, and that by so doing she-would prejudice her own right. I also suggested to the Princess that she might tell her gouvernante (age 60) it was but waste of time to press such matters upon her, because she would lose her life ten times before consenting to it without being better informed and her scruple of conscience removed by other persons than those of this realm whom she held "suspects," and that, if the King, her father, would give her time till she came "en eaige de perfection," from which she was perhaps not far removed, God would inspire her to devote herself entirely to him and enter religion, in which case she considers her honor and conscience might be preserved; or she might be meanwhile otherwise informed;—that this delay could be no disadvantage to the King, her father, but rather the contrary, for if she came to consent to matters the act at such an age would be of more validity. This I wrote to her, not as a positive instruction, but only as matter for consideration. I will think more at large of other means for putting the matter off in case of extremity, but if they have determined to poison her (luy donner a manger), neither taking the Sacrament nor any other security that can be invented will be of much avail.

Letters 1536. 21 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 141. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

One of the two[Scotch] ambassadors who passed this way about two months ago, returning from France, visited me on repassing the other day, and among other things told me of himself that the French had avoided informing the King, his master, of the death of the duke of Milan, well knowing that the practices for the marriage of the King, his master, were being interrupted, and without that they did not yet know how they stood as regards the French marriage; and that they had been trying hard of late to find out if the King would consent to give the Princess to the King, his master, but they find no likelihood of it. The said ambassador told me they had shown this King a brief, written by the Pope to the King, their master, expressing his desire to deprive Henry of his kingdom, and that if it appeared to him that the said King, their master, was able to treat for a reconciliation between the Pope and him, he would employ himself therein with very good will. To this the King replied that there was no occasion for the king of Scots or any other to trouble himself, for the Queen being dead, at whose request the whole had been done, he imagined there would be no further question, for he supposed his Holiness would attempt nothing in vindication of his primacy over the Church, considering the questions that had arisen about it at all times, and that, besides the Greeks having always held the King's opinion, the greater part of Germany, and other northern Princes, agreed with him also. He told me also that the ambassadors sent by this King a few months ago to Scotland were only to persuade the king of Scots to withdraw his obedience from the Apostolic See; but they have lost their labor, for they got nothing but ridicule. The first time they spoke to the King they asked for a secret audience, "et ny outrement que le secretaire," and as soon as the said ambassadors entered on the subject of their heresies, there arose the most horrible thunder that had been heard for a long time. Then the King began to make the sign of the Cross, not so much for the horror of the thunder, as he said, as of what the same ambassadors suggested. This King is sending new ambassadors to Scotland upon the same business, as the said ambassador has given me to understand, to whom I did not speak at great length except to assure him of your goodwill to his master, telling him, moreover, that they were good and wise, and that, seeing the state of matters here and elsewhere, they might very well secure their interests both for the present and for the future.

He who is called baillie of Amboise, of whom I have several times written to your Majesty, left here a few days ago, and having passed Boulogne, he was taken and detained at the request of the French ambassador here resident. To-day a French gentleman has arrived from Germany who belongs to M. de Langey. When I can learn his charge I will inform you. London, 21 Jan. 1535. French. From a modern copy, pp. 14.

Letters 1536. 21 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 141. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

It was reported here that the King, intending to go or send some good personage to console her, had ordered the death of her mother to be kept secret from the Princess; but it was no use; her gouvernante (age 60) told her the news four days after the Queen's death, before which time I had already written a consolatory letter for her, and had sent it to one of her ladies to present to her, which letter gave her great cousolation. Soon afterwards she wrote me in reply a very good letter, well written and well worded, in which, besides infinite thanks for all the good I had done her, she begged me to intimate to the King, her father, that if he took her away from the company in which she was she thought it would be fatal to her, and that following my counsel she would endeavour to show such constancy as I wrote to her, but in any case she would prepare herself to die. On the evening of the same day she begged her gouvernante (age 60) to write to the King to have the physician and apothecary of the Queen, rather, as I think to hear particulars of her mother's illness and death than for any need she had of their services; and, on the King replying that any illness she might suffer must be from worry (facherie), and that she had no need of a physician, she wrote me another letter, begging me, among other things, to press for the said physician and apothecary, which I did, as your Majesty will have seen above. I sent the day before yesterday to the Princess the letters your Majesty wrote to the Queen, her mother, and also that the Queen Regent in Flanders wrote to her, from which she received inestimable comfort, as she wrote me by a letter of hers, which I received half an hour ago. She has written to me since she heard the death of the Queen more frequently than she did before, and this, I think, to testify the good heart and constancy to which I continually exhort her, in which certainly she shows great sense and incomparable virtue and patience to bear so becomingly the death of such a mother to whom she bore as much love as any daughter ever did to her mother, who was her chief refuge in her troubles.

Henry VIII Tournament Accident

Letters 1536. 24 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 200. Chapuys (age 46) to Granvelle.

On the eve of the Conversion of St. Paul, the King being mounted on a great horse to run at the lists, both fell so heavily that every one thought it a miracle he was not killed, but he sustained no injury. Thinks he might ask of fortune for what greater misfortune he is reserved, like the other tyrant who escaped from the fall of the house, in which all the rest were smothered, and soon after died.

Anne Boleyn's Miscarriage

Letters 1536. 29 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 282. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

On the day of the interment the Concubine (age 35) had an abortion which seemed to be a male child which she had not borne 3½ months, at which the King has shown great distress. The said concubine (age 35) wished to lay the blame on the Duke of Norfolk (age 63), whom she hates, saying he frightened her by bringing the news of the fall the King had six days before. But it is well known that is not the cause, for it was told her in a way that she should not be alarmed or attach much importance to it. Some think it was owing to her own incapacity to bear children, others to a fear that the King would treat her like the late Queen, especially considering the treatment shown to a lady of the Court, named Mistress Semel [Jane Seymour (age 27)], to whom, as many say, he has lately made great presents. The Princess's gouvernante (age 60), her daughters, and a niece, have been in great sorrow for the said abortion, and have been continually questioning a lady who is very intimate with the Princess whether the said Princess did not know the said news of the abortion, and that she might know that, but they would not for the world that she knew the rest, meaning that there was some fear the King might take another wife.

Letters 1536. 10 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 283. Chapuys (age 46) to Granvelle.

This notable and good Catholic Archbishop of Canterbury, in his preaching on Sunday last, among other blasphemies against the Pope, proposed to prove that all the passages in Scripture about Antichrist referred to his Holiness, and, to injure at a blow the Holy See and the Imperial authority, cited one author who said that Antichrist should come when the empire was ruined. This, he said, it was now, because of all the monarchy only a small portion of Germany obeyed the empire; and he decried the Imperial authority as much as he could, ending by saying that the Pope was the true Antichrist, and no other need be looked for. Thus you may see the virtue and honesty of this apostate, and what has come of the good treatment shown him when he was with his Majesty, and what good cause I had to send my man to Bologna when his Majesty was there to prevent the Pope from allowing his promotion. I must not forget to say there are innumerable persons who consider that the concubine (age 35) is unable to conceive, and say that the daughter said to be hers and the abortion the other day are supposititious. Eight days ago the goods of the Dantzic merchants, which the King had sequestrated, were released. London, 10 Feb. 1535.

The King has lately given a Bishopric to one who some time ago abandoned the Augustinian habit1, and like a Lutheran fled to Germany, where it is said he has a wife. Fr., from a modern copy, p. 1.

Note 1. Barlow, who was about this time promoted to the Bishopric of St. Asaph, was certainly an Augustinian originally, but there seems here to be some confusion between him and Barnes (age 41).

Letters 1536. 25 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 351. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

I learn from several persons of this Court that for more than three months this King has not spoken ten times to the Concubine (age 35), and that when she miscarried he scarcely said anything to her, except that he saw clearly that God did not wish to give him male children; and in leaving her he told her, as if for spite, that he would speak to her after she was "relevize1". The said Concubine (age 35) attributed the misfortune to two causes: first, the King's fall; and, secondly, that the love she bore him was far greater than that of the late Queen, so that her heart broke when she saw that he loved others [Jane Seymour (age 27)]. At which remark the King was much grieved, and has shown his feeling by the fact that during these festive days he is here, and has left the other (age 35) at Greenwich, when formerly he could not leave her for an hour.

Note 1. Possibly from 'relever' ie recovered?

Letters 1536. 25 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 352. Chapuys (age 46) to Granvelle.

I thank you for your good report to the ambassador of England touching what I several times wrote of Mr. Secretary Cromwell, who, as you will see by what I write to his Majesty, has formally thanked me for it. You will learn all the news here from my letters to his Majesty, save that Cromwell has told me that the French king insinuated to the King his master that the Emperor was quite content with what he had done against the duke of Savoy; and, moreover, that a Bible has been printed here in English, in which the texts that favor the Queen, especially Deut. xix., have been translated in the opposite sense. I am credibly informed that the Concubine (age 35), after her abortion, consoled her maids who wept, telling them it was for the best, because she would be the sooner with child again, and that the son she bore would not be doubtful like this one, which had been conceived during the life of the Queen; thereby acknowledging a doubt about the bastardy of her daughter. London, 25 Feb. 1535. Fr., from a modern copy, p. 1.

Letters 1536. 29 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 200. Chapuys (age 46) to Granvelle.

As Master Brian left France the day after the news of the Queen's death arrived, I do not think there have been any great intrigues, and as the English have no doubt given them to understand that now they hold the Emperor in their hands, and have already received proposals from him, the French would have answered them immediately that it was they who have received proposals, and to pay them off in their own coin they have invented that which has been written to his Majesty. This is the rumour that Brian has brought. Fr., modern copy, pp. 2.

Letters 1536. 29 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 199. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Wrote at length on the 21st. My man has since arrived, by whom I have learnt part of what has been proposed by the Regent of Flanders and also by De Roeulx touching the enterprise, the transport of which is the question. The rest I am to learn from the man whom De Roeulx will send hither shortly. To say the truth, I fear that the time for the enterprise has gone by, at least for a while, seeing that, [the Princess] is to be removed in six days from the place where everything was prepared, and would have been removed already, but for the arrangements for the Queen's burial, to a place very unsuitable for the attempt. For this reason I had asked the house to which she is to be removed for the Queen, and though I have no hope of success, I will do my best to discover some means of carrying it into effect. This very morning I secretly sent for one of those who had hitherto been of counsel in the matter, but it has become more difficult because my men are forbidden to frequent the neighbourhood. If matters could be delayed, I think a better opportunity would offer, because the removal of the personages cannot but be to a more propitious place.

Letters 1536. [Around 29 Jan 1536]. Vienna Archives. 199. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Yesterday Brian returned in post from France, who, as I wrote to you at his departure, went to congratulate the French king on his convalescence, which this King lately confirmed to me, and was also charged to demand the release of certain English ships detained at Bordeaux. I think he has not been successful on the last point, because, as soon as be had arrived, the King sent for Cromwell and his other councillors, and to-day he has sent for the French ambassador, to whom I hear complaint has been made of the detention of the said ships, of which they say he has been partly the cause by writing that French merchants were illtreated here, new imposts being levied upon them in violation of treaties between the two Kings, which the Council deny to be the case. For his own justification the ambassador, immediately on his return from Court, sent for all the French merchants to hear their complaints, and will send to me to-morrow a servant to learn what the then ambassador of France and I concluded three years ago with the Council of this King touching the complaints both of the French merchants and of your Majesty's subjects. Brian is also said to have brought news that your Majesty had offered the duchess and dukedom of Milan to the king of France for the duke of Angoulême, and that this was the cause of his speedy return, in order that the King, if he wished to break the said understandings, might consent to all that the French desired. I am told that Brian is returning to France, I know not if it will be before Monday or Tuesday, because the French ambassador is put off to these days for his coming to Court with the merchants. He who was governor of Ireland is dead, and it is said affairs are not settled there, and that some of the kinsmen and friends of young Kildare resent the wrong and breach of faith that has been done to him. London, 29 Jan. 1535. Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 1.

Letters 1536. 29 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 199. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The Queen's physician and apothecary, upon what I wrote to them, as I lately informed your Majesty, were two days with the Princess, who, thank God, is well, and had no need of them, except to know particulars of her mother's illness and death. I am now surprised that the King allowed me to send them thither, as they received no more promise of being allowed to enter than my own men. They have forbidden her to speak to anybody, but she has recompensed herself well by continually writing, for which she has better opportunities than hitherto, because by reason of her mourning she remains most of her time alone in her chamber.

Letters 1536. 29 Jan 1536. Vienna Archives. 199. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The gouvernante (age 60) of the Princess having lately informed her niece the concubine that the Princess did not care about the offers made to her on her part, and would rather die a hundred times than change her opinion or do anything against her honour and conscience, the concubine wrote to the said gouvernante (age 60) a letter, which might almost be called a libel against the Princess; at which, nevertheless, she only laughs. Since then I have informed the Princess of my suggestion, which I lately wrote, viz., that she [should say she] was strongly desirous of entering religion, provided she came to full age, and not sooner, in order that it might not be imputed to lightness or despair, especially considering that the King, her father, was expelling monks and nuns from monasteries who had entered such houses before that time (i.e., before they were of age). The Princess approves of this ruse, and means to put it in practise with such additions as she may think suitable.

Letters 1536. Vienna Archives. 282. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

On the 4th instant began the Parliament, for the instruction of which there were at the same time printed and published several books concerning ecclesiastical ceremonies, especially against images and the adoration of saints, and against those who uphold purgatory; and in accordance with this and the statutes hitherto made against the Pope the preachers are commanded to instruct the people. This command also extends to prelates and others, and already on Sunday last the archbishop of Canterbury played his part in the grande place in front of the cathedral of this city, and of the two hours that he preached one and a half were occupied with blasphemies against his Holiness and his predecessors. On Sunday next the archbishop of York is to preach, and so, according to their degrees, all the others. The great object of the King is to persuade the people that there is no purgatory, in order afterwards to seize all the ecclesiastical endowments; and as to the other Lutheran articles, they have no difficulty in passing them. This of purgatory is the newest and most strange to the people, and still more to the lords whose predecessors have left foundations for the memory of posterity. Yet if the matter were ten times more unjust, there is no one who dare contradict the King without other support.

Letters 1536. Vienna Archives. 282. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Yesterday arrived the person sent by M. du Rœulx to investigate the means for the enterprise, and to inform me of what he proposed to do for his part. But, as I have twice written, I fear that the opportunity is gone. I await, however, the answer of the personage whom the matter concerns, by which we must be guided, and consult how the affair may be accomplished. London, 10 Feb. 1535. French, from a modern copy, pp. 4. An extract of the last paragraph is in the Rymer Transcripts, Vol. 145, No. 6, at the Record Office.

Letters 1536. 10 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 282. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

I do not think the English ships detained at Bordeaux will be so soon delivered, seeing that the English, in spite of the remonstrance made by the French ambassador on Candlemas Day when he returned to Court, refused to alter their ordinances; and if those at Bordeaux show as much obstinacy some disorder may arise from it,—at least so thinks the ambassador, who having received four days ago letters from the King his master, although it was late in the evening, sent for a merchant, a great friend of his, to warn him to see to his affairs and be ready to remove when necessary, for he thought that some trouble must arise without delay between the two Kings, both for matters concerning the Faith and for the refusal to deliver the Princess to the Dauphin. Nevertheless, this does not strike me as probable, especially considering that the French king has quite lately given licence to this King to procure a great quantity of grain from France. I hear nothing more of the return of Brian to France, nor of any negociations between the French and those here.

Letters 1536. 10 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 282. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The Princess (age 19) is well. She changed her lodging on Saturday last, and was better accompanied on her removal and provided with what was necessary to her than she had been before. She had an opportunity of distributing alms on the way, because her father had placed about 100,000 crowns at her disposal. It is rumoured that the King, as Cromwell (age 51) sent to inform me immediately after the Queen's death, means to increase her train and exalt her position. I hope it may be so, and that no scorpion lurks under the honey. I think the King only waited to summon the said Princess to swear to the statutes in expectation that the concubine would have had a male child, of which they both felt assured. I know not what he will do now. I have suggested to the Princess to consider if it be not expedient, when she is pressed to take the oath, if she be reduced to extremity, to offer that if the King her father have a son she will condescend to his will, and that she might at once begin throwing out some such hint to her gouvernante (age 60). I will inform you of her reply.

Letters 1536. 17 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 307. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Two days ago some Gueldrois arrived, and came to the King. Will endeavour to discover the cause, and inform His Majesty both of that and of what takes place at this Parliament, in which nothing has yet been done that is worth writing. London, 17 Feb. 1535. Fr. From a modern copy1; pp. 5.

ii. Copy of the letter of the Concubine to Madame Chelton, her aunt.

[Before 29 Jan 1536]. Mrs. Shelton (age 60), my pleasure is that you do not further move the Lady Mary (age 19) to be towards the King's Grace otherwise than it pleases herself. What I have done has been more for charity than for anything the King or I care what road she takes, or whether she will change her purpose, for if I have a son, as I hope shortly, I know what will happen to her; and therefore, considering the Word of God, to do good to one's enemy, I wished to warn her before hand, because I have daily experience that the King's wisdom is such as not to esteem her repentance of her rudeness and unnatural obstinacy when she has no choice. By the law of God and of the King, she ought clearly to acknowledge her error and evil conscience if her blind affection had not so blinded her eyes that she will see nothing but what pleases herself. Mrs. Shelton, I beg you not to think to do me any pleasure by turning her from any of her wilful courses, because she could not do me [good] or evil; and do your duty about her according to the King's command, as I am assured you do, "et le devez estre aussi (qu. assuré?) que me trouverez vre. bonne dame quil ne (qu. quelque?) chose quelle face." Fr. From a modern copy, p. 1.

Note 1. There is another modern copy in Rymer Transcripts, Vol. 145, No. 6, but some important passages are omitted in it. A translation of the greater part of the letter will be found in Froude's "The Pilgrim," p. 108.

Letters 1536. 17 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 307. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Informed His Majesty of the arrival of lord Rœulx's man by his last letters of the 10th. Has communicated his charge to the Princess by the man in whom she trusts. Late yesterday the said man informed him that it was not necessary to acquaint her with the plan, as she trusted entirely to Chapuys' discretion. She thought it would be easy to escape from the house if she had something sent her to drug some of her women with. She would have to pass her governess's window; but once out of the house could easily find means to break or open the garden gate. She is so eager to escape from all her troubles and dangers that if he were to advise her to cross the Channel in a sieve she would do it; but this desire makes it seem easier both to her and to her confidant. Thinks it would really be much more difficult, as she has no person of sense or experience about her, and if she has been lodged in a place so convenient for escaping, it may be a trap to tempt her. She does not think that she is guarded; but still she may very probably be so without knowing it, as last year at Greenwich. The ports also may be warned. The house where she is at present is much more inconvenient for the enterprise than the former one. In the first place, it is 15 miles further from Gravesend, where lord Rœulx intends her to embark. His shipmaster says that he dare not come any higher, and therefore it would be necessary to ride 40 miles on horseback. It would be impossible to do this without relays, and even with them it could not be managed with such rapidity as to prevent discovery. There are a great many people and horses in the village where she now is, and she would now have to pass several large villages, where she could be easily detained. The former house was free from these dangers; there were no horses or men near it, and it would have been unnecessary to pass through any place where six or eight harquebus men on horseback could not have kept things quiet1. If the Princess could be brought below Gravelinghe (Gravesend), as the shipmaster wishes, all would be right. If she embarked nearer, it would have to be about two miles from here, which would be very dangerous, as one could not be sure of the tide or of not being stopped on the river. The master says he dare not conceal men in the ship, everything is so carefully searched. They might, however, be put in different boats (?) (charrues) as sailors or passengers, and disembarked beyond Gravesend. The Princess thinks it certain, and others say the same, that she will be removed about Easter, probably to the house in which she last was or nearer, which would be very convenient. Although the Princess very much desires to escape from all her troubles, still she would prefer, as surer and more profitable, the general and total remedy so necessary for God's service to rescue innumerable souls from perdition; for even if she were to escape, the matter would not end there, but the King might fortify himself where he is at present weak, and the case would be still more difficult. Thinks, for his own part, that if she were once out of England, and in the Emperor's power, Henry would not kick against the pricks. She is continually asking him to beg the Emperor to hasten the remedy, which she fears will be too late for her, for which reason she is daily preparing herself for death. She wished Chapuys to send a messenger to the Emperor, unless the late Queen's physician had any mind to go thither; but Chapuys dissuaded her from doing so by showing her that it implied distrust in the Emperor, and by assuring her of the diligence and vigilance which would be used. Will take care that the physician does not go to Spain or elsewhere, as the Princess dare not trust any one else. Although he has not yet been retained as her physician, orders have been given to her gouvernante (age 60), by Chapuys' request, since the Queen's death, to allow him to visit her whenever necessary, which will be a great comfort to her if it continue, and will make matters easier. If the King is going to add to her suite, as is reported, some of her mother's old servants, and one who served the late Queen as master valet of the apothecary, could be got as her valet de chambre, the enterprise would be much easier, as he would be a fit man to assist in it, especially if she were removed nearer London, or to the place where she last was, which, as I said, is expected about Easter, when the season will be more suitable, as the King generally leaves the neighbourhood about that time, and the sea would be more navigable for vessels with oars, which De Rœulx ought to have provided. Moreover, it appears by a letter which the concubine wrote to her aunt, Madame Shelton (age 60), the said Princess's gouvernante, shortly before the said concubine's miscarriage, of which I enclose a copy, that the Princess's case is by no means so urgent as it was before. I know not if the said letter was a ruse, of which there is some fear, seeing that it was left by the gouvernante (age 60) as a thing forgotten in the Princess's oratory, who, having transcribed it, replaced it where she found it.

If the affair is carried out, it will not be to His Majesty's honor for Chapuys to remain here, as nothing will make Henry believe that he had no share in it, and consequently nothing could deliver him from death, for in this as in other things the King would show that he has no respect or fear of anyone in the world. Nor would the concubine restrain him from doing so, for she bears Chapuys no good will, any more than the King does himself, for having always shown him the truth against his inclination. Proposes, when everything is ready, to find some honorable excuse for going into Flanders with two or three of his men; for, having discussed the matter with lord Rœulx's man, it would be very difficult for him to take any part in the enterprise without being discovered; and possibly when he is gone, they would pay less regard to it, especially if he were to pretend that when in Flanders he might solicit something in their behalf. Desires instructions what to do. Does not wish the Emperor to suppose he hesitates for want of good will or for fear of death, which in His Majesty's service he would think a glory.

Note 1. "Sy ne convenoit passer par lieu que six ou huit arqueboutiers a cheval neussent pu rebouter et fait tenir quoy."

Letters 1536. 25 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 351. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

As I found Cromwell showed no intention of proceeding further, and it appeared already time to part, I said, for my own part, to return to the renewal of amity, that if your Majesty, as a Catholic prince and protector of the Church, were in the first place to desire his master to submit again to the Holy See, and likewise were to demand that the Princess should be declared legitimate and restored to her estate; and, thirdly, if your Majesty desired the king of England to enter a league against the Turk in order to get Germany to enter, which some time since offered a great aid for that enterprise, on condition that other princes would join; and, fourthly, if your Majesty proposed to him a general league, offensive and defensive, against all who might do wrong to each other,—what would the King his master reply and do thereupon?

Letters 1536. 25 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 351. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Cromwell replied that as to the last point he thought the King his master would do all your Majesty wished. As to the third, he was sure the King would contribute against the Turk more than you could ask, and that the King only regretted that he was not more able and more conveniently situated to undertake the said enterprise himself, and that he had no wish to employ his money otherwise. As to the Princess, he said now was the best time to remedy her affairs to the satisfaction of your Majesty, and that the door was open. As to the first point, which was the most difficult, after some discussions that we had together, he at last said he thought the King would consent to what should be agreed between Commissioners on both sides; on which I showed him that the said Commissioners could scarcely effect anything,—that the King must first restore the Pope and submit to the determination of the coming Council, and that to allege now that the convocation of the said Council belonged to your Majesty and not to his Holiness, was evidently to refuse assent to its celebration, though they acknowledged it to be so needful for the service of God and the tranquillity of Christendom. To this he only replied that it was necessary to begin with some point, and that I should get your Majesty to send me a commission with articles declaring that on the King sending ambassadors to treat of matters they would be favorably heard, on which the King would send a very great and honorable embassy, and once the matter was in train I might leave it to him, "et quil en jouyroit par dessus la corde."

Letters 1536. 25 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 351. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

On this we remained some little time silent, except that he repeated to me what he had already said about the Princess, and told me I might have good hope about the rest, and that I should consider the wonders he had done here since he had had the government of the King's affairs. It seemed to me he meant to intimate that it was in his power "de faire partie de ce quil avoit fait," especially in the matter of the Princess, for whose service he offered to do all that was possible.

Talking with Cromwell of his master's negotiations in Germany and Denmark, he told me that he was ready to forfeit his head if it were found that anything had been treated in those countries to the prejudice of your Majesty, but he thought that if the understanding between you and his master were such as he desired, your Majesty's affairs would be none the worse even on the side of Denmark; and that the reason why they had sent the bishop of Hereford into Germany was to learn the judgment of several persons touching their affairs, and to ascertain how things were going, and not for any other object. I did not wish to reply to him that for this purpose it was unnecessary to seek means of sending to the said Bishop 20,000 ducats, besides much money that he had already received, lest I should injure the merchant who had told me that two days before the said Cromwell had asked him to make a letter of exchange to that amount for Nuremberg, which the said merchant declined to do till he had an answer from Jehan Carlo de Affaictatis.

As yet there is no change with regard to the Princess, who wrote to me yesterday she wished me to send or write again to your Majesty to remedy her case.

Letters 1536. 25 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 351. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The Princess has just sent to me to say that since Cromwell spoke with me he had sent to her, on the part of the King, for a little cross which the Queen had ordered to be taken to the said Princess after her death. I think there are not 10 crowns worth of gold in the said cross nor any jewellery, but within is a portion of the true Cross, towards which the Princess felt great devotion. Thus your Majesty may judge what reliance is to be placed upon the words of these men. I think that God will never give them grace to recognise their error, lest they should avoid the punishment of their abominable misdeeds. London, day of St. Matthias 1536. Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 9.

Letters 1536. 25 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 351. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

I forgot to write that among the news brought by Cromwell, he said it was reported in France that the good Queen (deceased) had been poisoned, and that the French alleged the said report came from the Spaniards; which news he could not report to me without some change of colour and bearing. I replied that I did not think there was a Spaniard in the said Court who would presume to publish such news there, and that the French must have spoken it as what they presumed themselves, and that some of the wiser heads among them, in order to speak more freely, had attributed it to the Spaniards. To which he said "que ainsi l'escriproit il." On my saying to Cromwell that to promote the amity which he spoke of, the way was not to persecute the Church and churchmen, he answered that they would proceed no further therein.

Letters 1536. 25 Feb 1536. Vienna Archives. 351. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The day before yesterday Cromwell sent to beg that I would come and speak with him in the Church of the Augustines, which adjoins my lodging and abuts on a large house he is building, which I politely declined to do, expecting that the King was going to perform some obsequies as had been reported; and also I had determined not to go out till I had done my duty to the Church by celebrating masses for the soul of the good Queen, meaning afterwards to go out today, feast of Saint Matthias; adding that if he would not come and see me he might send to tell me what he wanted to say. As soon as he received my answer he sent to tell me, by a secretary of his who carries all the messages between the King and him (que fait toutes les ambassades entre le roy et luy), that he would have been very glad to come to me if only to see how I did, but that it was unadvisable at this time, both to avoid the suspicion of the French and because he wished only to speak to me of himself and not by command of the King, and therefore he begged I would choose some place less suspect where we could talk together, and he would tell me things of great importance for the services of your Majesty and the King. Considering his reasons, especially the second, (for of the first I might make use, as well as himself, if it were not for my desire to satisfy the King his master, as I had several times informed him,) I sent to tell him that next day, yesterday, I would be very early at the Augustines, and that after the offices which I meant to celebrate there for the Queen I would return through the house which he is building, as it would be my most direct road home. Yesterday morning, before I had gone to the church, he had already come to the said house, which is about half a league distant from where he dwells now, and there I met him after having heard the office. After thanking me for the honor I had done him in coming to see him, and for making such a good report to your Majesty of him as Granvelle had informed their ambassador, he repeated the grand prologue he has usually made touching the advantage of the amity between your Majesty and the King his master, by which you might easily succeed in your enterprises both against the Turk and others, for if you and the King were thoroughly united no other prince in Christendom durst murmur, and that he considered continually night and day how to cement the said amity. For this reason he had continually done his best to prevent anything being treated with the French to your prejudice, or to that of the said amity, and said I might remember that when the King's commissioners went to Calais to meet the Admiral and the other French commissioners he had assured me that nothing would be treated to your disadvantage, neither was there, and he could clearly show that this was one of the articles contained in the charge of the bishop of Winchester, concerning which he could also show me a letter from the king of France, who never forbore to beg the King his master to move war against you and invade Flanders; but he was quite mistaken, for the King would never undertake such a dance, and of this I might be quite assured; and, moreover, that the King his master desired nothing more earnestly than your friendship, to which he was not only naturally inclined himself but strongly urged by his Council, especially by those who were pensionaries of France, such as the dukes of Norfolk and Suffolk and the Treasurer, as well as by those of the opposite party like the Earl of Wiltshire (age 59), the said councillors being indignant at the incredible ingratitude and wickedness of the French, and moved by the goodness and innumerable virtues of your Majesty, whose affairs are conducted by the grace and clemency of God, who seems to have taken your interests under His special care. Nor did they think you disinclined to reciprocate their friendship, considering the language used by Granvelle to their ambassador, and especially that it appeared by what they heard from Rome that your Majesty had not yet permitted the Pope to fulminate the censures, to do which his Holiness had been extremely urged by the cardinals since the death of the cardinal of Rochester. But although the King and his Council were well assured of your goodwill they thought if you [bore to them] onetenth part of the affection that all this people bore to you, your benevolence towards them would augment in such fashion that it would be impossible for the Pope, who was scarcely a friend of your Majesty, or any other power to persuade you to allow injury to be done to this kingdom; and since it had pleased God to remove from this world that which was the only hindrance to cordial amity, it was right that the servants of either Prince should do their utmost for the renewal and confirmation of the said amity; that he had great confidence that I would do my best to promote it, whereby I should acquire immortal fame; and he begged I would despatch some one in all diligence to inform you of the said matters, and to request that you would not lose the opportunity now that the door was open. I praised Cromwell's prudence and goodwill, and told him that hitherto I had not found in your Majesty any other desire than to continue and augment the said friendship, and that you only wished it restored to the condition of which he spoke; and as to despatching any one to your Majesty about such general conversation as we had had without any particular overture, it seemed like wasting time and trouble for nothing, for it was only the same song as ever; and, to cut the matter short, and show that something effectual was meant, it would be necessary to propose some overture. On this Cromwell said that I might feel quite assured there was no dissimulation in what he had said, and it would be very foolish in him to attempt it, for nothing could be gained thereby for his master; and as what he had said came of himself without commission from his master, I might see that he had no power to make any overture, which must come of your Majesty. And for himself, when I remarked that they had not yet replied to the first overtures your Majesty had made, he answered that there was no occasion to speak of those overtures now, as the Queen, to whom they chiefly related, was dead. I did not wish for the moment to say more than that, perhaps, the article of the validity of the Queen's sentence was still more necessary to be declared than previously; and on his asking why, I declined to tell him, saying I had not spoken assuredly, and would not insist upon the matter. Hereupon Cromwell began to praise the Bishop of Winchester, who had shown great judgment in avoiding the tricks and deceits of the French, and had wisely advised the King not to trust them, but to use every effort to ally himself with your Majesty, with which Cromwell said he was very much pleased, for the Bishop was bound to treat with the French, and to hear what they said; but when he had to treat with your Majesty his heart rebounded with pleasure. And here he showed such great anger that he could hardly explain himself, saying that the French had played such tricks upon the King that he would rather be hanged on the highest steeple of London than have done or thought the half of them; and, besides this, that the French, for their own advantage, had intimated to Likkerke that the King his master meant to send men against Flanders and against Denmark. Incidentally he told me that the marriage was spoken of between the duke of Angoulême and the duchess of Milan, and that your Majesty would invest Angoulême with the said duchy. I think all that he said is meant principally to interrupt the said alliance, of which I have the greater suspicion because the said Cromwell begged me to write it all to Likkerke as well as to your Majesty.

Letters 1536. 07 Mar 1536. Vienna Archives. 429. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The Bishop of Llandaff, confessor of the late Queen, finding that he could not live here as a Catholic, or preserve his own soul in safety, fearing also that by refusing to swear to the new statutes he should be treated like the cardinal of Rochester and some others, determined, on the very day of my last letters, 25th ultimo, to escape from the kingdom to Flanders or to Arragon, where he was born, after first visiting your Majesty and the Pope; but he managed so badly that he was taken prisoner and put in the Tower. No one yet knows what will be the issue of his case, but I fear he will not be permitted to leave the kingdom lest he should stir up opposition to the King. For the same reason the King is afraid that the late Queen's physician wishes to remove hence, and he is trying to get him into his service, or at least keep him here for some time. For this purpose Cromwell sent to me this morning, requesting that I would send the said physician to him, whom he has been urgently soliciting to accept the King's service. The physician replied that to do so at once would arouse people's suspicions, and give occasion to scandal. Moreover, he did not know how your Majesty, whose subject he is, would take it. In reply to this last point Cromwell told him that there was no obstacle at all, for before three months there would be most perfect friendship between your Majesty and the King his master; to accomplish which he was holding the door wide open. The physician, however, declined to answer without taking my advice.

The two Gueldrois who arrived here, of whom one is burgomaster of Nimiguen, left four days ago. I am told they have had no other answer but that the King would respect the treaties between France and Gueldres. The two uncles of the Earl of Kildare, a brother, and some other kinsmen who have hitherto withstood strongly, have at last surrendered. Many think that the King was only awaiting this news to put Kildare to execution. It is said that they were assured that Kildare was well treated, that they might be entrapped. They are expected every day in this city, and it is said they will all wed the Tower, whatever has been promised them. Cromwell sent yesterday and the day before to tell me that he would come to me today or tomorrow. Perhaps he means to inform me that the King avows what he said to me lately; or perhaps he means to come to some particular overture on the subject of his proposals to the Queen's physician, who informs me that on speaking with him yesterday, when he named the Princess, Cromwell put his hand to his bonnet, which he did not often do, except sometimes when mention was made of your Majesty. London, 7 March 1535.French, from a modern copy, pp. 2.

Letters 1536. 18 Mar 1536. Vienna Archives. 495. Chapuys (age 46) to Granvelle.

Knows not what to add to what he has written to the Emperor, except that he has been informed that of late the King said triumphantly at a full table how the Pope, fearing the Emperor's approach to Rome, had furnished the castle of St. Angelo to withdraw into, and was raising foot soldiers for the same reason. He also said that the marquis of Guasto had killed the marquis of Villa Franca, which was a very awkward thing for the Emperor. These are all French inventions, which this King has no great difficulty in believing. You will see by the letters I write to his Majesty, the gentle device of this King to extract money on pretext of charity by means of the offerings. If it succeed, as no doubt it will, he will gain an immense sum of money, for he will impose a tax according to his will which everyone will have to offer, and not engage to do so for once but for all the other innumerable inventions that this King daily puts forward in order to get money, at which the people is terribly grieved and almost desperate, but no man dare complain. The new amours of this King with the young lady [Jane Seymour (age 27)] of whom I have before written still go on, to the intense rage of the concubine (age 35); and the King fifteen days ago put into his chamber the young lady's brother (age 36).

London, 18 March 1535Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 2.

Letters 1536. 1 April [1536]. Vienna Archives. 601. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Having three days ago received letters from the Queen Regent in Flanders, addressed to this King, in reply to those he wrote to her for the delivery of two rebels and fugitives of this realm, I sent to Cromwell to know when I should present them; who made answer that I should be welcome to him at all times; nevertheless if it suited me better to deliver them to Cromwell instead, I might do so. And immediately after the said reply, Cromwell sent to me again yesterday morning direct to say that if I agreed he would relieve me of the trouble and come to me, as he thought he was in reason bound to do. But I thought I must not abuse such great courtesy, seeing that I had to present the same letters; and I thought it better to address myself to him rather than to the King, both to avoid giving colour to what the King had lately intimated to the French ambassador, viz., that some courier had come whom I kept in secret, and that you had despatched him expressly to solicit aid in money, and also because Cromwell, being, as he professes, very much inclined to the preservation of amity between your Majesty and the King, not only does continually good service in reporting what he sees conducive thereto, but also adds of himself according to the exigence of affairs. Further, I thought it would be good to find out what was at the bottom of his repeatedly expressed desire to talk with me. Accordingly I went yesterday after dinner to Cromwell, who was very well satisfied with the said Queen's letters, and replied five or six times, with great fervour, that it was a good beginning for the matter of the preservation of the amity of which we had so often talked, to which the King was more inclined than ever, and likewise those of his Council; and that it had been frequently proposed for a long time past to send some good embassy to your Majesty, but that the King alone had always been opposed to it until he had received some answer to what he told me during the Christmas holidays, and which Cromwell had repeated to me since. And Cromwell assured me, on his life and honor, that the King had never treated anything in France, Germany, or elsewhere, to the prejudice of the friendship he has with your Majesty; and that lately again, having been asked by two persons sent hither by the duke of Gueldres to make a similar league with the said Duke to what the French had made, the King had replied that as both parties were at peace there was no occasion for a league, and if there were, he must presuppose the reservation of ancient friendships, especially those he had with your Majesty. And with this answer the said personages of Gueldres returned without having achieved more. Cromwell has confirmed to me the statement that his master and the king of Scots are to meet at York, and that perhaps they might afterwards come hither in company. I think the king of Scots agreed to this interview in the hope of persuading the King to give him the Princess, but being informed of the conclusion of the marriage made by his ambassadors with the lady of Vendôme, of which he knew nothing when he despatched the ambassador who came hither to arrange the interview, I suspect there will be some change.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Afterwards he sent to me to say that he had received letters from France, by which he suspected some treaty was being negociated between your Majesty and the French king, and begged that if I knew or suspected anything thereof I would inform him in confidence; and, moreover, if it were so, that I would give him counsel what to do to prevent things set on foot from being interrupted. I replied that I certainly knew nothing of it, and for my part I thought that the agreement would have been soon made if your Majesty had wished to gratify the French, of which I saw no great appearance, and that even if matters were far advanced I thought nothing would be done before the return of the courier; and as to the counsel he desired, he was wise enough to see to it without me, who could say nothing more than what I have said of late days. He afterwards sent to tell me that, owing to the hasty return of the courier from France, he could not send the letters which his master was to write, and therefore begged me to delay the courier a little; at which, showing there was great need of haste, I made some difficulty, until he sent to me a second time repeating the request. It might be that in consequence of the said news, to hinder the conclusion, he would give me another answer.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Seeing that there was no other remedy, and that Cromwell affirmed to me that it would be labor lost to go and make remonstrances to the Council as I desired, in order to keep matters going, and not give the English an opportunity of treating elsewhere, I interpreted things with Cromwell in the best light, promising to do all I could and employ all my friends, and I hoped to obtain the letters from your Majesty. And on my declaring myself half sure of this, he told me that he who trusts in the word of princes, who say and unsay things, and promises himself anything from them, is not over wise, as he had found on Tuesday last; and so, after earnestly commending the affairs to me, and promising that he would not cease to inculcate them on his master, I took leave of him.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Hereupon, without having given him any occasion except [that I desired] he would take with extreme gentleness and patience what I showed him, he began to be somewhat angry, and reproached your Majesty with great ingratitude, saying that without him you would not have acquired the Empire or enjoyed Spain, and that after you had been elected you had not only treated him with neglect, but had tried to get him declared schismatic and deprived of his kingdom, and that you ("quil," qu "quelle"? i.e. vre. Majesté) had not kept your promise to him not to make peace with the king of France till you had obtained for him the crown of France, and that when Francis was your prisoner you had replied you would not make war on your prisoner. He concealed the other article of the reply, viz., that he had already made a compact with the Chancellor of Alençon, as I showed him, telling him, as to the declarations he spoke of, that he himself had affirmed to me, (and I had not since spoken to him), that he knew well it was the Pope who solicited his (qu. your?) Majesty about it, but that if he was well informed he would find that immediately after the Admiral had left ill content with the last meeting at Calais there were others who solicited the same declarations. I did not cease to beg the King to put all this aside, urging that if there had been in the past any ill understanding so much the more earnest should be the good offices; and I quoted certain authorities and histories serving to this purpose. I afterwards told the King that since he would not give me a more formal answer I begged him to write to his ambassador with your Majesty. He remained some time without knowing what to reply, but afterwards said that if I wished it he was willing to do it, but in that case he held the said reply as not given; and then immediately afterwards said to me that his ambassador was not fit for this, and that I must have the honor since I had made the beginning. The Chancellor and Cromwell appeared to regret these answers, and in spite of the King's gestures (bonnes mynes) to them that they should applaud him, neither of them would say three words. The conclusion was that he would next day look over the treaties he had with your Majesty, and inform me of what they determined. At this slender and provoking reply, after compliments to the Duke of Norfolk (age 63) and others of the Council, I left the Court, and went to wait on Cromwell at the place where we met in the morning, and there we expressed our mutual regret, which was great on both sides, especially on that of Cromwell, who was hardly able to speak for sorrow, and had never been more mortified in his life than with the said reply. I suggested to him that we should suspend the other matters, and consider what could be done about the fourth point, and as to marrying the Princess;—at which he recovered his spirits, and said he had still hope of a good result. Next day, Wednesday of Easter week, the King's whole Council were assembled for three or four hours; and, as Cromwell informed me, there was not one of them but remained long on his knees before the King to beg him, for the honor of God, not to lose so good an opportunity of establishing a friendship so necessary and advantageous; but they had not been able to change his opinion, and that he would sooner suffer all the ills in the world than confess tacitly or expressly that he had done you any injury, or that he desired this friendship, but that if asked for it in good form, as he had said, he would be content. Today, Thursday, Cromwell reported the above to me, and thanked me on the part of the King for the good office I had done, begging me on his part also to continue till the establishment of this friendship was achieved, and that afterwards all the other points would be disposed of to your Majesty's satisfaction; and begged, for the honor of God, that I would at least obtain a letter of credence addressed to the King, saying that the King would liberally acknowledge my trouble. Moreover, he has given me to understand that he told the King his master that if he had known what has taken place in this affair, he would not have meddled with it for all the gold in England, and that henceforth he would not treat with ambassadors without having a colleagne; telling me also that although he had always pretended that what he said to me was of his own suggestion, yet he had neither said nor done anything without express command from the King. On my asking him what could have made this variation in the King's will, he said he could not imagine what spirit it was, and that at least I had given him no occasion, for the King himself was satisfied with the moderate language I had used; and he concluded that princes have spirits or properties which are hidden and unknown to all others. By which conversations Cromwell showed covertly his dissatisfaction at the strange contradictions of his master. He also told me that the King was writing to his ambassadors in France to desire the French king to desist from his enterprises, and that he had spoken of it yesterday also to the French ambassador, who, as the said Cromwell told me, came back yesterday from Court as mortified as I was the day before.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The French ambassador, as I mentioned, was at Court the day after me without being called. The King, besides what I have written, complained to him of certain galleasses, newly made in France, which had lately come to this coast to spy, and had taken a Venetian ship, and had been examining (et avoit revisite) certain ports of this kingdom and the merchandise therein; at which the King was much displeased, and was still less satisfied with the reply of the said ambassador, who gave him to understand that the said foists and galleys had not come to reconnoitre the ships in the ports, except to know if anyone would bring corn from France against the prohibition there made. The said ambassador, as Cromwell gives me to understand, has not acquired great reputation by such an answer, especially as he seemed to complain that I had been in Court and so well received.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

On coming to Court I was most cordially received by all the Lords of the Council, who congratulated me on the happy news, praising greatly the good service they presumed that I had done,—especially Lord Rochford (age 33), the Concubine's (age 35) brother, to whom I said that I did not doubt that he had as great pleasure in what was taking place as any other, and that he would assist as in a matter for the benefit of the whole world, but especially of himself and his friends. He showed me "fort grosse chiere," and I dissembled in the same way with him, avoiding all occasions of entering into Lutheran discussions, from which he could not refrain.

Before the King went out to mass Cromwell came to me on his part to ask if I would not go and visit and kiss the Concubine (age 35), which would be doing a pleasure to this King; nevertheless, he left it to me. I told him that for a long time my will had been slave to that of the King, and that to serve him it was enough to command me; but that I thought, for several reasons, which I would tell the King another time, such a visit would not be advisable, and I begged Cromwell to excuse it, and dissuade the said visit in order not to spoil matters. Immediately afterwards Cromwell came to tell me that the King had taken it all in good part, hoping that hereafter "lon y supplyeroit assez," and he immediately added that after dinner I should speak with the King at leisure, and that on leaving him, agreeably to their custom, I ought to see those of the Council and explain my charge. I told him that I thought things were so honorable and reasonable, and had been foreseen so long, that I thought the King would make up his mind immediately; and if not, he to whom my credence was addressed would make a far better report to the Council than I could; nevertheless, that till I had heard part of the King's will, I could neither promise to go, nor not to go, to the said Council, though I meant to speak particularly to all, and do all that they would counsel me. Just after this the King came out and gave me a very kind reception, holding for some time his bonnet in his hand, and not allowing me to be uncovered longer than himself; and after asking how I was, and telling me that I was very welcome, he inquired of the good health of your Majesty and showed himself very glad to hear good news. He then asked where you were, and on my telling him that the courier had left you near Rome, he said that by the date of your Majesty's letters to his Secretary it appeared that you were at Gaeta when the courier left. Hereupon he asked if you would stay long at Rome, and on my telling him that I thought not, unless your Majesty could gratify him by a long delay, for which purpose I was sure you would make no difficulty either in remaining or doing anything else that you could on his account, he said he thought it would have been better for your interests not to have come so soon to Rome, but to have staid in Naples, so as to afford a bait to those who needed it to involve themselves further in the meshes. I said that there was still time enough to use such dissimulation, and that I was sure you would in this and other matters be glad to follow his counsel as that of a very old friend, good brother, and, as it were, a father, as he might understand by what I should tell him hereafter more at leisure. On this he said, Well, we should have leisure to discuss all matters. I was conducted to mass by Lord Rochford (age 33), the concubine's brother, and when the King came to the offering there was a great concourse of people partly to see how the concubine and I behaved to each other. She was courteous enough, for when I was behind the door by which she entered, she returned, merely to do me reverence as I did to her. After mass the King went to dine at the concubine's lodging, whither everybody accompanied him except myself, who was conducted by Rochford (age 33) to the King's Chamber of Presence, and dined there with all the principal men of the Court. I am told the concubine (age 35) asked the King why I did not enter there as the other ambassadors did, and the King replied that it was not without good reason. Nevertheless, I am told by one who heard her, the said concubine after dinner said that it was a great shame in the king of France to treat his uncle, the duke of Savoy, as he did, and to make war against Milan so as to break the enterprise against the Turks; and that it really seemed that the king of France, weary of his life on account of his illnesses, wished by war to put an end to his days. As soon as the King had dined, he, in passing by where I was, made me the same caress as in the morning, and, taking me by the hand, led me into his chamber, whither only the Chancellor and Cromwell followed. He took me apart to a window. I reminded him of several conversations which Cromwell and I had had, and also of those of your ambassador in France with Wallop, and also of the old affection your Majesty had borne him, and began to declare your will touching the four points, taking the utmost care to speak as gently as possible, that he might not find grounds of quarrel or irritation. He heard me patiently and without interruption, till at last, on my saying that your Majesty, desirous above all things of the peace of Christendom, had forborne your claim to Burgundy, which you might demand by a much better title than the invaders of Savoy and Milan, he answered that Milan belonged to the king of France, and the duchy of Burgundy also, for you had renounced it by the treaty of Cambray, which qualified the unreasonable conditions of that of Madrid, and that even if Milan had now come to your hands the defensive treaties comprehended only the lordships possessed at the time they were passed. I showed him, but not without difficulty, that he was illinformed about your rights to Milan and Burgundy, and also that when those treaties were made you were the lawful Lord of Milan, and he who held it was only feudatory, after whose death the duchy was not newly acquired by your Majesty, but had only been consolidated; which argument, as Cromwell informs me, has since been weighed and approved by the King and his Council.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

I had scarcely mounted horse to return when Cromwell despatched a messenger to inform the King with all diligence that I had brought him the best news in the world; and next day, Easter Monday, Cromwell went to Court before the King rose, and afterwards he sent to tell me that he had shown the King your letters, and reported all our conversations, with which the King had been much pleased, and desired that I would come to Court next day, Easter Tuesday, about 6 in the morning, and that I should have an answer which he doubted not would please me. On Tuesday morning I went out to a lodging I have on the Thames, between London and Greenwich, and there Cromwell met me coming from a lodging which he has in the neighbourhood, and confirmed to me what he had sent to tell me the evening before. In our conversation I begged him, as I had done on Easter Day, not only to help the matter for his part, but to direct me in what he thought I should say, and to whom I ought to address myself, and that he would consider what honor it would be to him to accomplish this negociation, besides the public benefit. He replied that although I had no need of his advice, nevertheless he would advise me in confidence what seemed best to him, leaving it to my discretion how far I should follow it.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

As to the third point, he replied fully and liberally as he had done before. When we came to the fourth, he declared the King his master was very much disgusted at the inhumanity the French king had shown to the duke of Savoy, and blamed the enterprise Francis made upon Milan as rash and illconsidered, and in violation of treaties. He said the King had written to this effect to Francis; but I do not know how to believe it, for when I spoke with the King himself, praising him for having done such a good office, I found him vacillate, telling me at one time that he had warned the king of France, and at another that it was not a matter for him to trouble himself with. And Cromwell told me that if I wished it his master would send some good personage to the king of France to warn him to desist from the said enterprise, otherwise he would consider himself bound to fulfil his treaties with your Majesty. I accepted the offer at once, and begged him as earnestly as possible to pre-occupy this point before I talked with the King about it; which he promised to do. Hereupon Cromwell began to repeat the great inclination which all the Council without exception had to the establishment of this friendship, and the little affection they bear to France, insomuch that only a few days ago they unanimously told the King he must not suppose there was any of them who had the slightest affection to France, except so far as they saw him inclined that way, and that, except out of regard for him, they had more esteem for the least hair of your Majesty's head than for Francis and all his people.

Cromwell gave me to understand that the King his master held the French army as broken, seeing the great power of your Majesty, and that if he were in your place he would stay some time about Rome and dissemble matters, so as to give the Frenchmen an opportunity of entering Italy further with their power and riches, in order to give them the more effectual beating. Cromwell, then, among other reproaches which he threw at the French, touched upon the ambassador Francis had with the Turks; and, from one thing to another, getting warm upon the subject, he said he was not accustomed to conceal anything, and would tell me of a wickedness as great as could be conceived; and, entering his chamber, he produced a letter stating that the Turk had given a great reception to La Forestz, the ambassador of France, and a treaty had already been made between the Turk and him in his master's name, and that if this were so Henry would not cease to make or procure war against Francis, even to his total destruction; and since Francis so inhumanly made war against the duke of Savoy, his own uncle, without any just title, what would he not do against them from whom he could obtain much more profit, if only they had power to invade them? And Cromwell was convinced that if the French had as much power to injure England as as the English have to injure France they would not let them rest, and now that they saw their neighbour's house burning they ought to have some fear for their own; and assuredly, as I told him, it was time, before the effects of the understanding with the Turk proceeded further, to apply a remedy, and the King his master ought not to lose such an opportunity of doing at once a great service to God, a service to Christendom, and a pleasure to such a friend as your Majesty. Cromwell also thought he would not, and has no doubt that Francis only aims at Milan, to obtain which he would refuse no conditions your Majesty would demand. I do not write the means and observations by which I drew him to say these things, only he could not make profit out of anything I said to him. He replied to me several times that he never heard more agreeable news, and that I could not have done him so great pleasure by giving him 20 (sic), for the news had come in good time before the arrival of any man from France, and that although he had not intended to go to Court for three days, he would go there as early as possible. In the end, I informed him of the answer the Queen had made to me about the release of the two Germans1 detained in Flanders, but he would hardly listen to it, saying it was a matter of no moment, and that it must not be mixed up with this, on which depended all other things. Nevertheless, three days before he had spoken of it haughtily enough to a servant of mine.

Note 1. See Nos. 541 and 718.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Having sat up all night on Easter Eve to decipher the said letters of the 28th ult., I went to Cromwell on Easter Day after dinner at a very fine house the King has given him well furnished, three leagues from here; and before mentioning the news I had received from your Majesty, or the letters addressed to himself, I reminded him of the communications we had several times had upon the establishment of peace and amity, especially on the eve of St. Matthias; and finding him firm, and as determined as ever to complete things begun, declaring also, of himself, the indignation he felt against the French, I presented to him the letters of your Majesty, which he kissed and received with great reverence, replying several times that he knew not how he could deserve your Majesty's great kindness in having deigued to write to him who was only "un petit compagnon." I then declared to Cromwell your intention upon the four points contained in the letters. As to the first, he made greater difficulty than before, saying the injury done to his master by the Holy See was so recent, and the constitutions having just been made which the King had promulgated against the said See, it would be very difficult to bring the King back, but that if the amity between your Majesty and the King were consolidated you would have in process of time greater influence to persuade his master to this reconciliation. He said further that the Pope on his side, with inconstancy enough, solicited the King's friendship, and that very lately the Pope's son had requested some great personage of the Court of Rome to write to Cromwell that, for the honor of God, he would take the matter in hand, and that this King would find the Pope very willing to satisfy him as far as possible. The Pope's son had also said that if the King would not listen to this, his Holiness would be compelled to abandon the friendship of the king of France. And hereupon Cromwell sent for the secretary who had the letters to this effect, to show me them; but he was not at home; at which Cromwell was very much displeased, telling me, as he did five days later, that he wished by all means that I should see the said letters. Hereupon I asked Cromwell how he understood that the Pope, failing of the reconciliation of the King his master, would leave the friendship of the king of France; saying that did not appear to me probable, but, on the contrary, His Holiness having lost the obedience here ought to be the more anxious to preserve the friendship of France, both to avoid alienating that kingdom, and to obtain assistance from it for the remedy of affairs here. This I said to him, fearing that this King, who is credulous enough in matters agreeable to himself, would give faith to the said words, and show himself less inclined to the said reconciliation, supposing that if the Pope abandoned France he would get the French king to support his new opinions, and would make use of him as he pleased. Cromwell only answered that he did not know how these words were to be understood, but so the letters contained, which I should see. I fancy the Pope's son intended to hint that his Holiness forbore to make a league with your Majesty, and was showing himself partial to France, upon an intimation given to him by France that it was in their power to bring back this King into obedience to the Apostolic See. I expressed myself very glad that such honorable offers had been made to the King his master, and said the King could not wish for anything more honorable than that, after having done what pleased himself in despite of those whom he need not name, he should now be so humanely desired by his Holiness and your Majesty for a thing so just and necessary for the discharge of his conscience and the tranquillity not only of this kingdom but of all Christendom. By this means, the troubles of Christendom would be appeased, and its forces directed elsewhere, and the King might boast of being father of his country, and even of having triumphed over his Holiness and your Majesty, who came to him half as suppliants for the said reconciliation. Cromwell confessed it was all true, and hoped every thing would be settled in time, and meanwhile he would promote the matter to the utmost of his power. As to the second point, touching the Princess, he said the King would certainly act like a good father and a virtuous prince, but as it was a matter that depended upon the King's honor it was not a subject for express stipulation; the King was only waiting for an opportunity to show the affection he bore the Princess; nevertheless he would not forbear to make all suitable representations to the King his master, and what could not be done at present could be easily achieved when the amity was established.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

One of the greatest disappointments I have suffered has been not being able to effect (exploicter) in this matter what your Majesty desires. Greater vigilance and dexterity could not have been used than has been done. I have forborne to write it all, fearing that what I write is already too long, and I beg you to excuse me that I have not been able to do better.—Suggests that if the Emperor, weary of pursuing matters with the English, thinks it expedient to treat with the French, the whole matter should be brought forward by means of the Pope, as they have to do with men of little faith, and that the king of France should promise to obey the commands of the Holy See, especially about the matrimonial sentence and its consequences; and it should be said that if, in consequence of this King's obstinacy, it be necessary to proceed to the promulgation of the bull depriving him of his kingdom, that the right to the kingdom is entirely reserved to the Princess, so that she may not lose the pension and claim of France; and it would be necessary, to give greater occasion to see to the preservation of her life, to arrange something in favor of the lawful successors, or the assistance to your Majesty in the pursuit of her quarrels; and though I think your Majesty would not listen to it, it should be expressly said that neither you nor the said King shall regard as lawful any issue that this King may have of his concubine (age 35), nor of any other wife during her life; which agreement is in conformity with the sentence and with law, unless the Pope dispenses with it, and it would be necessary at once to constrain the Pope not to give such a dispensation; and I think that if this King heard that a part of this had been arranged he would suddenly come to his senses without waiting for the said force to be applied. If your Majesty thinks the matter should be pursued here, it could not but do good to thank the Chancellor and the Duke of Norfolk (age 63) by letter for their good will, begging them to continue.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Perceiving by this conversation that the King's affection was not sincere, I did not enter further into business, but only asked him if the king of France were to break or attempt to break any other article touching the duke of Gueldres or other matters, whether he would not aid your Majesty according to the treaties. He replied that, so far as he found himself bound, he would acquit himself better than several others had done towards him; and as to the rest, in which he was not bound, he would give satisfaction as occasion was given to him. Returning to the subject of the war against the duke of Savoy, he wished me to understand, notwithstanding that I had told him what you had written to me, that the said war was not against the will of your Majesty, and also that the duke of Savoy had lately offered to come to the court of France, "sur quoy ne resta a luy donner assez raisons a lopposite." After this he called the Chancellor and Cromwell, and made me repeat before them what I had said to him, which I did succinctly, without interruption from him or the others. After which they talked together, while I conversed and made some acquaintance with the brother (age 36) of the young lady [Jane Seymour (age 27)] to whom the King is now attached, always keeping an eye upon the gestures of the King and those with him. There seemed to be some dispute and considerable anger, as I thought, between the King and Cromwell; and after a considerable time Cromwell grumbling (recomplant (?) et grondissant) left the conference in the window where the King was, excusing himself that he was so very thirsty (altere) that he was quite exhausted, as he really was with pure vexation (de pur enuyt), and sat down upon a coffer out of sight of the King, where he sent for something to drink. Shortly afterwards the King came out of the conclave, I know not whether to come near me, or to see where Cromwell was. He told me that the matters proposed were so important that without having my propositions in writing he could not communicate them to his Council or make me any reply. I told him that I was not forbidden to do so, but I could not venture, for several reasons, and I thought it a new thing, seeing that hitherto he had not asked anything of me by way of writing, and had never found me variable or vacillating, either now or before, and that I had learned from his ambassadors whom he sent to Bologna to your Majesty to make such refusal, although they had not such good reason for it as I; also I had taken example of Cromwell, who had never given me anything in writing; and if he wished such writing to be assured that there was no dissimulation on your Majesty's part, I would offer my ears, which I would give far more unwillingly than all the writings in the world, if there should be any deceit on the side of your Majesty;—with which conversation, as Cromwell told me afterwards, the King was far better assured than before, taking this offer in good part. Nevertheless, he insisted wonderfully on having the said writing, and said several times very obstinately that he would give no reply. Nevertheless, he did reply, confusedly and in anger, to the following effect:—(1.) The affair of the Pope did not concern your Majesty, if you did not wish to meddle with it to vindicate your authority over the whole world, and if he wished to treat with His Holiness he has means and friends without needing your intercession. (2.) Concerning the Princess she was his daughter, and he would treat her according as she obeyed him or not, and no one else had a right to interfere. (3.) As to the subvention against the Turk, it was necessary first to re-establish old friendship before putting people to expense. (4.) As to the fourth, which was most urgent, and which I have chiefly pressed, he said he would not violate any promise he has made, or refuse the friendship of any one who desired it, provided it was such as was becoming, but that he was no longer a child, and that they must not give him the stick, and then caress him, appealing to him and begging him. In saying this, to show how he was experienced in business, he began playing with his fingers on his knees, and doing as if he were calling a child to pacify it, [and said] that before asking an injured person for favor and aid it was necessary to acknowledge old favors. And on my saying that we had been so long treating of this re-establishment, and I had pressed for an overture of what he wished to be done, but to no purpose, he answered that it was not for him to make an overture, but for those who sought him. I replied that if he who was hurt did not show his wound it was impossible to heal it. He then said he wished your Majesty would write to him, [desiring] that if there had been in the past any ingratitude or error on your part towards him, he would forget it, [and] requesting him to show that the root of old amity is not disturbed. I told him this was not reasonable, and he moderated the proposal, suggesting that you should request him not to speak any more of the past. I said no other letter was needed, because I asked it of him in the name of your Majesty; but he persisted that he must have letters, and it was no use reminding him of what he has several times said to me before, that delay is the ruin of all good works.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

By statute of the Parliament the temporal goods of the Bishopric of Norwich, worth 3,000 of rent, have been dismembered, and the King's grant of them to the Earl of Wiltshire (age 59) has been confirmed; to whom also the King has given two of the abbeys that are to be suppressed. The said Parliament, [which] has lasted by several prorogations from the time I came here, to the great expense and trouble of the whole kingdom, is now dissolved, having first by a statute transferred the authority and power of the said Parliament, in which all the lords, both spiritual and temporal, were present, and more than 300 secular persons on the part of the Commons, to 32 persons whom the King should choose, which is one of the chief points that the King could have desired.

The Scotch ambassador has told me that nothing has yet been settled touching the interviews of the two Kings, and that he had come to learn the cause why this King so strongly desired them; to which he replied that he would not declare it to any man alive except the Scotch king. As soon as the ambassador arrived Cromwell told him that he need not waste his time in seeking to have the Princess for his master, or attempt to make any condition with the King not to speak of the question of religion at the said interviews. And the ambassador thinks no interview will take place, although the King does not cease to press for it, and for this very purpose has just lately sent to the king of Scots the brother of the Duke of Norfolk (age 63). London, 21 April 1536. Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 17.

Letters 1536. 21 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 699. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Received on the 15th, Easter Eve, your Majesty's letters of the 28th ult. Had already received on the 11th those of the last of February only; and, according to instructions in the last-mentioned, informed the Princess of what he thought advisable. Will not repeat what he has said in previous letters of the state of matters since that date, as nothing new has arisen. Will only state his opinion of what it would be right to capitulate in favour of the affairs of the Princess, in case the Emperor should treat with the French; but as there would be no necessity of that advice in case those here would agree to the articles contained in the Emperor's last letters, will forbear to write it till he has some answer as to the intentions of those here.

Letters 1536. 24 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 720. Chapuys (age 46) to [Granvelle].

This very moment when the courier was about to mount I have been informed of his departure, and having already written pretty fully, I shall say little now. I forgot in my last to make answer about the intentions of those here with regard to the Council. They have made no formal reply, only saying that they would not disturb such a good thing, or cut themselves off from the number of Christians, but they conclude that such a Council must be convoked by the Emperor. Does not think they want one. Thinks the news of an arrangement between the Emperor and the king of France has thrown them into great confusion, and compelled them to dispatch this courier; because previously they cared nothing, and would not have written even to their ambassador if Chapuys had not urged them, which he very soon afterwards repented, for he would have dispatched the courier two days sooner without waiting for their letters. Yesterday the French ambassador was long at Court, and Chapuys has not been able yet to discover what he was negociating. The King also sent for the late Queen's physician, and told him he would have called him sooner but for fear of its being insinuated that there had been some intrigue to put the Queen to death. The King said he wished to make use of him, and thought that I would consent willingly, and get the Emperor to agree to it, otherwise he would not take him into his service, and that the means to get the Emperor and me to agree to it was to give out that he was retained for the Princess, with whom he would be left till all suspicions and murmurs had died out. And hereupon the King began to speak very well of me, and asked the physician two or three times if he had not spoken with me since Easter Tuesday when I was with him. I think he wished to find out what was in my mind after his brusque replies. Although I would not kiss or speak to the Concubine (age 35), the Princess and other good persons have been somewhat jealous at the mutual reverences required by politeness which were done at the church. I refused to visit her until I had spoken to the King. If I had seen any hope from the King's answer I would have offered not two but 100 candles to the shedevil, although another thing made me unwilling, viz., that I was told she was not in favor with the King; besides, Cromwell was quite of my opinion that I should do well to wait till I had spoken to the King. Even before receiving instructions from the Emperor, has always avoided "l'envoy" which the Princess urged, as again she has since done, for the reasons which he has heretofore written1. London, 24 April 1536. Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 3.

Note 1. "Sans quil eust pleu a sa matc me faire aduertir dexcuser lenvoy, dont la Princesse me sollicitoit comme encoires elle a depuis fait je nen (qu. m'en?) avoye garde, et continuellement luy ay satisfait des raisons que jay cy devant escriptes."

Letters 1536. 29 Apr 1536. Vienna Archives. 752. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The Grand Ecuyer [Esquire], Mr. Caro (age 40), had on St. George's day the Order of the Garter in the place of the deceased M. de Burgain, to the great disappointment of Rochford (age 33), who was seeking for it, and all the more because the Concubine (age 35) has not had sufficient influence to get it for her brother; and it will not be the fault of the said Ecuyer if the Concubine, although his cousin (quelque, qu. quoique? cousine) be not dismounted. He continually counsels Mrs. Semel [Jane Seymour (age 27)] and other conspirators "pour luy faire une venue," [to make him a visit] and only four days ago he and some persons of the chamber sent to tell the Princess (age 20) to be of good cheer, for shortly the opposite party would put water in their wine, for the King was already as sick and tired of the concubine (age 35) as could be; and the brother of lord Montague told me yesterday at dinner that the day before the bishop of London (age 61) had been asked if the King could abandon the said concubine, and he would not give any opinion to anyone but the King himself, and before doing so he would like to know the King's own inclination, meaning to intimate that the King might leave the said concubine, but that, knowing his fickleness, he would not put himself in danger. The said Bishop was the principal cause and instrument of the first divorce, of which he heartily repents, and would still more gladly promote this, the said concubine and all her race are such abominable Lutherans. London, 29 April 1536. Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 2.

Letters 1536. 29 April. Vienna Archives. 752. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The day after the courier Gadaluppe left, the King sent for the French ambassador, and there was great consultation in Court. As I am told by one who is in the French ambassador's secrets, the King asked him to go in post to his master on certain affairs, which the ambassador agreed to do, and next day made preparations for leaving, then returned to Court on the day appointed, viz. Tuesday; but the Council, which was assembled in the morning till 9 or 10 at night, could not agree to the dispatch, and the ambassador was put off till Thursday. The day before yesterday, when he was expecting to leave, new matters were proposed to him, quite at variance with those which had been treated, so that he has refused the voyage, and sent yesterday an ordinary courier. I cannot yet make out what the negociation was, but I think that those here are making bargains to hinder, if they can, peace from being concluded between your Majesty and the king of France, for as soon as they had news that there was some hope of it they appeared confounded. I hear from all quarters that the King has ordered the preachers to avoid new opinions touching rites and ceremonies, and preach everywhere according to the old fashion, except as regards the primacy of the Pope, which he will not allow in his kingdom, claiming to be absolute sovereign in spiritual as in temporal matters, by authority of God and of his Parliament. And although the King will admit purgatory as formerly, or at least a third place neither paradise nor hell, and confesses that prayers assist the dead, yet he will not forbear to throw down the monasteries, and impiously usurp the foundations for the redemption of the dead.

Arrest of Anne Boleyn

Letters 1536. 02 May 1536. Vienna Archives. 782. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V (age 36).

Your Majesty (age 36) will remember what I wrote about the beginning of last month, of the conversation I had with Cromwell (age 51) about the divorce of this King from the Concubine (age 35). I have since heard the will of the Princess (age 20), by which, as I wrote, I meant to be guided, and which was that I should promote the matter, especially for the discharge of the conscience of the King (age 44) her father, and that she did not care in the least if he had lawful heirs who would deprive her of the succession, nor for all the injuries done either to herself or to the Queen her mother, which, for the honor of God, she pardoned everyone most heartily. I accordingly used several means to promote the matter, both with Cromwell (age 51) and with others, of which I have not hitherto written, awaiting some certain issue of the affair, which, in my opinion, has come to pass much better than anybody could have believed, to the great disgrace [of the Concubine], who by the judgment of God has been brought in full daylight from Greenwich to the Tower of London, conducted by the Duke of Norfolk (age 63), the two Chamberlains, of the realm and of the chamber, and only four women have been left to her. The report is that it is for adultery, in which she has long continued, with a player [Mark Smeaton (age 24)] on the spinnet of her chamber, who has been this morning lodged in the Tower [Map], and Mr. Norris (age 54), the most private and familiar "somelier de corps" of the King, for not having revealed the matter.

Letters 1536. 05 May 1536. 908. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Three days after the Concubine's imprisonment the Princess removed, and was honorably accompanied both by the servants of the Little Bastard (age 2) and by several gentlemen who came of their own accord. Many of her old servants and maids upon these news went to her, and although her gouvernante (age 60) allowed them to remain, she was warned by me not to accept or retain anyone but those given her by the King her father. What I most fear as regards her is, that when the King is asked by Parliament to restore her to her rights, he will refuse his consent unless the Princess first swears to the statutes invalidating the first marriage and the Pope's authority. To this, I think, she will not easily yield, although I should advise her to acquiesce in everything as far as she can without prejudice to her conscience and her own rights. Desires to know the Emperor's opinion.

Trial of Brereton, Norris, Smeaton, and Weston

Letters 1536. 11 May 1536. 908. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

On the 11th were condemned as traitors Master Norreys (age 54), the King's chief butler, (sommelier de corps) Master Weston (age 25), who used to lie with the King, Master Brereton, gentleman of the Chamber, and the groom (varlet de chambre) [Mark Smeaton (age 24)], of whom I wrote to your Majesty by my man. Only the groom (age 24) confessed that he had been three times with the said putain and Concubine (age 35). The others were condemned upon presumption and certain indications, without valid proof or confession.

Trial of Anne and George Boleyn

Letters 1536. 15 May 1536. 908. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

On the 15th the said Concubine and her brother (age 33) were condemned of treason by all the principal lords of England, and the Duke of Norfolk (age 63) pronounced sentence. I am told the Earl of Wiltshire (age 59) was quite as ready to assist at the judgment as he had done at the condemnation of the other four. Neither the putain (age 35) nor her brother (age 33) was brought to Westminster like the other criminals. They were condemned within the Tower, but the thing was not done secretly, for there were more than 2,000 persons present. What she was principally charged with was having cohabited with her brother and other accomplices; that there was a promise between her and Norris (age 54) to marry after the King's death, which it thus appeared they hoped for; and that she had received and given to Norris certain medals, which might be interpreted to mean that she had poisoned the late Queen and intrigued to do the same to the Princess. These things she totally denied, and gave to each a plausible answer. Yet she confessed she had given money to Weston (age 25), as she had often done to other young gentlemen. She was also charged, and her brother likewise, with having laughed at the King and his dress, and that she showed in various ways she did not love the King but was tired of him. Her brother was charged with having cohabited with her by presumption, because he had been once found a long time with her, and with certain other little follies. To all he replied so well that several of those present wagered 10 to 1 that he would be acquitted, especially as no witnesses were produced against either him or her, as it is usual to do, particularly when the accused denies the charge.

I must not omit, that among other things charged against him as a crime was, that his sister (age 35) had told his wife (age 31) that the King "nestoit habile en cas de soy copuler avec femme, et quil navoit ne vertu ne puissance1." This he was not openly charged with, but it was shown him in writing, with a warning not to repeat it. But he immediately declared the matter, in great contempt of Cromwell and some others, saying he would not in this point arouse any suspicion which might prejudice the King's issue. He was also charged with having spread reports which called in question whether his sister's daughter was the King's child. To which he made no reply. They were judged separately, and did not see each other. The Concubine was condemned first, and having heard the sentence, which was to be burnt or beheaded at the King's pleasure, she preserved her composure, saying that she held herself "pour toute saluee de la mort2," and that what she regretted most was that the above persons, who were innocent and loyal to the King, were to die for her. She only asked a short space for shrift (pour disposer sa conscience3). Her brother, after his condemnation, said that since he must die, he would no longer maintain his innocence, but confessed that he had deserved death. He only begged the King that his debts, which he recounted, might be paid out of his goods.

Although everybody rejoices at the execution of the putain, there are some who murmur at the mode of procedure against her and the others, and people speak variously of the King; and it will not pacify the world when it is known what has passed and is passing between him and Mrs. Jane Semel (age 27). Already it sounds ill in the ears of the people, that the King, having received such ignominy, has shown himself more glad than ever since the arrest of the putain; for he has been going about banqueting with ladies, sometimes remaining after midnight, and returning by the river. Most part of the time he was accompanied by various musical instruments, and, on the other hand, by the singers of his chamber, which many interpret as showing his delight at getting rid of a "maigre vieille et mechante bague4," with hope of change, which is a thing specially agreeable to this King. He supped lately with several ladies in the house of the Bishop of Carlisle, and showed an extravagant joy, as the said Bishop came to tell me next morning, who reported, moreover, that the King had said to him, among other things, that he had long expected the issue of these affairs, and that thereupon he had before composed a tragedy, which he carried with him; and, so saying, the King drew from his bosom a little book written in his own hand, but the Bishop did not read the contents. It may have been certain ballads that the King has composed, at which the putain and her brother laughed as foolish things, which was objected to them as a great crime.

Note 1. "was not skilful in case of copulating with a woman, and that he had neither virtue nor power".

Note 2. "for every death salute".

Note 3. to dispose of one's conscience.

Note 4. skinny old nasty ring

Note 5. This part of the letter was written on the 17th. See further on, at the beginning of the last paragraph.

Execution of George Boleyn, Brereton, Norris, Smeaton and Weston

Letters 1536. 17 May 1536. 908. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Today1 Rochford (age 33) has been beheaded before the Tower, and the four others above named, notwithstanding the intercession of the Bishop of Tarbes, the French ambassador resident, and the sieur de Tinteville, who arrived the day before yesterday, in behalf of one named Weston (age 25). The Concubine (age 35) saw them executed from the Tower, to aggravate her grief. Rochford (age 33) disclaimed all that he was charged with, confessing, however, that he had deserved death for having been so much contaminated and having contaminated others with these new sects, and he prayed everyone to abandon such heresies. The Concubine (age 35) will certainly be beheaded tomorrow, or on Friday at the latest, and I think the King feels the time long that it is not done already. The day before the putain's condemnation he sent for Mrs. Semel [Jane Seymour (age 27)] by the Grand Esquire and some others, and made her come within a mile of his lodging, where she is splendidly served by the King's cook and other officers. She is most richly dressed. One of her relations, who dined with her on the day of the said condemnation, told me that the King sent that morning to tell her that he would send her news at 3 o'clock of the condemnation of the putain (age 35), which he did by Mr. Briant, whom he sent in all haste. To judge by appearances, there is no doubt that he will take the said Semel [Jane Seymour (age 27)] to wife; and some think the agreements and promises are already made.

Note 1. This part of the letter was written on the 17th. See further on, at the beginning of the last paragraph.

Letters 1536. 18 May. Vienna Archives. 901. Chapuys (age 46) to Antoine Perrenot.

As I hear that letters from England are opened at Calais, you will have more trouble in deciphering several things which but for this might be written clear. I have no news to add to what I write to His Majesty, except to tell you something of the quality of the King's new lady [Jane Seymour (age 27)], which the Emperor and Granvelle would perhaps like to hear. She is sister of one Edward Semel (age 36), "qua este a sa majesty," of middle stature and no great beauty, so fair that one would call her rather pale than otherwise. She is over twnty-five years old. I leave you to judge whether, being English and having long frequented the Court, "si elle ne tiendroit pas a conscience de navoir pourveu et prevenu de savoir que cest de faire noces1." Perhaps this King will only be too glad to be so far relieved from trouble. Also, according to the account given of him by the Concubine (age 35), he has neither vigour nor virtue; and besides he may make a condition in the marriage that she be a virgin, and when he has a mind to divorce her he will find enough of witnesses. The said Semel [Jane Seymour (age 27)] is not a woman of great wit, but she may have good understanding (un bel enigm, qu. engin?). It is said she inclines to be proud and haughty. She bears great love and reverence to the Princess. I know not if honors will make her change hereafter. The news you wrote on the 22nd ult. touching Haurain2 and the Sophi are very good, and I pray God your wish may be accomplished towards those who are in grief. London, 18 May 1536.Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 2.

Note 1. if she would not be aware of not having provided and warned to know that it is to make a wedding

Note 2. Ibrahim Pacha?

Letters 1536. 19 May 1536. 908. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

The joy shown by this people every day not only at the ruin of the Concubine (age 35) but at the hope of the Princess' restoration, is inconceivable, but as yet the King shows no great disposition towards the latter; indeed he has twice shown himself obstinate when spoken to on the subject by his Council. I hear that, even before the arrest of the Concubine, the King, speaking with Mistress Jane Semel (age 27) of their future marriage, the latter suggested that the Princess should be replaced in her former position; and the King told her she was a fool, and ought to solicit the advancement of the children they would have between them, and not any others. She replied that in asking for the restoration of the Princess she conceived she was seeking the rest and tranquillity of the King, herself, her future children, and the whole realm; for, without that, neither your Majesty nor this people would ever be content. Will endeavour by all means to make her continue in this vein. Hopes also to go and speak with the King within three days, and with those of the Council in general and particular. Will also get some of the lords spoken with who have been called hither for the Parliament to commence on the 8th proximo. Thinks the Concubine's little bastard will be excluded from the succession, and that the King will get himself requested by Parliament to marry. To cover the affection he has for the said Semel (age 27) he has lodged her seven miles hence in the house of the grand esquire, and says publicly that he has no desire in the world to get married again unless he is constrained by his subjects to do so. Several have already told me, and sent to say that, if it cost them their lives, when Parliament meets they will urge the cause of the Princess to the utmost (il pourteront jusques au boult laffaire de lad. princesse).

The very evening the Concubine (age 35) was brought to the Tower, when the Duke of Richmond (age 16) went to say Good night to his father, and ask his blessing after the English custom, the King began to weep, saying that he and his sister, meaning the Princess, were greatly bound to God for having escaped the hands of that accursed whore, who had determined to poison them; from which it is clear that the King knew something about it.

Letters 1536. 19 May 1536. Vienna Archives. 908. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

Received on the 7th, by the English ambassador's messenger, the Emperor's letters of the 13th ult. Was unable, from a tertian fever, to visit the King, but communicated the contents to Cromwell, who expressed himself very much gratified to hear, especially with such particulars, of the continuance of the Emperor's goodwill, giving hope, as usual, of reciprocity on the part of his master, and saying that matters could not be in better train, owing to what had taken place as regards the concubine; reminding Chapuys also of what he had said to him on the eve of St. Matthias, when he had given a hint of what was going to take place. He also expressed great desire for Chapuys' recovery, that he might, after the dispatch of the Concubine and her accomplices, come to Court for business. As to the draft copy of the [bull of] privation which the French have got, I think they will make little by it as regards the English, who have been long persuaded that the Holy See was pursuing the matter in its own behalf and pressing your Majesty about it; and they are more jealous lest the French should make immediate profit out of it—by exemption from the pension and from the claims of England in France—than that your Majesty should gain anything; and the Princess, for whom you have most consideration, would be injured by it. This I must point out to Cromwell on every opportunity, as he is incessantly seeking to establish this stricter amity. For this reason, when the English ambassador's messenger on his arrival reported the sincere and perfect goodwill shown by your Majesty to his master, Cromwell sent him immediately to the King, conjuring him to declare it plainly without allowing himself to be disturbed by any appearance of a contrary feeling on the King's part. The said messenger tells me the King answered him that there was no appearance whatever of this goodwill except in words, and that these words were only because the Emperor's affairs did not succeed altogether to his wish, and he wanted the King's help, i.e. pecuniary aid; for as to the rest, however the French might disguise it, he considered your Majesty's forces incomparably greater than theirs, and considered them as already lost.

Letters 1536. 19 May [1536]. Vienna Archives. Chapuys (age 46) to Granvelle.

Refers him for the news to his letter to the Emperor. Hopes to make amends for his present brevity by writing to him the history of the conduct of this English Messalina or Agrippina during her imprisonment. The woman who has her in charge will not conceal anything from Chapuys. She has already sent to tell him some news, among others that the said Messalina could not imagine that anyone but Chapuys had got her in disgrace with the King, for ever since he came to Court the King has regarded her with an evil eye. It is well for Chapuys she did not escape, because with her humanity she would have given him to the dogs to eat. There are still two English gentlemen1 detained on her account, and it is suspected that there will be many more, because the King has said he believed that more than 100 had to do with her. You never saw prince nor man who made greater show of his horns or bore them more pleasantly. I leave you to imagine the cause.

Owing to my illness, and to await the last act of the story, besides that George must have informed you what was to follow, I have not hastened to write sooner. London, 18 May 1536.

Yesterday the archbishop of Canterbury declared by sentence that the Concubine's daughter was the bastard of Mr. Norris (deceased), and not the King's daughter. This already removes an obstacle in the way of the Princess, who, I hope, whatever difficulty the King has made hitherto, will be declared true heiress of the kingdom, not as born of lawful marriage, but as legitimate propter bonam fidem parentum. Others tell me that the said Archbishop had pronounced the marriage of the King and Concubine (age 35) invalid on account of the King having had connection with her sister (age 37), and that, as both parties knew of this, the good faith of the parents cannot make the said bastard legitimate. Although the matter is not much to be relied on, many think that most of the new bishops "ont davoir leur Sainct Marten," because, having persuaded the Concubine (age 35) that she had no need to confess, she grew more audacious in vice; and, moreover, they persuaded her that according to the said sect it was lawful to seek aid elsewhere, even from her own relations, when her husband was not capable of satisfying her. The Concubine (age 35), before her marriage with the King, said, to increase his love, that there was a prophecy that about this time a Queen of England would be burnt, but, to please the King, she did not care. After her marriage she boasted that the previous events mentioned in the prophecy had already been accomplished, and yet she was not condemned. But they might well have said to her, as was said to Cæsar, "the Ides have come, but not gone." Has no doubt that if the Emperor intends to negociate with the English he will send some one to give greater weight to the affair, according to the letters of his Majesty; and if the said personage could negociate before the conclusion of Parliament, it would be very advantageous both for the interests of the Princess and for the rest. If he come about St. John's Day, he will probably assist at the new marriage and coronation, in which the King intends to do wonders. He has already given orders to build a vessel like the "Busentaure de Venice," to carry the lady from Greenwich hither. London, 19 May. Fr., from a modern copy, pp. 3.

Note 1. The mutilations in the original are supplied from Burnet. Compare also Herbert, who abridges.

Betrothal of Henry VIII and Jane Seymour

Letters 1536. 20 May 1536. Vienna Archives. 926. Chapuys (age 46) to Granvelle.

Wrote yesterday very fully to the Emperor and Granvelle. Has just been informed, the bearer of this having already mounted, that Mrs. Semel [Jane Seymour (age 27)] came secretly by river this morning to the King's lodging, and that the promise and betrothal (desponsacion) was made at 9 o'clock. The King means it to be kept secret till Whitsuntide; but everybody begins already to murmur by suspicion, and several affirm that long before the death of the other (deceased) there was some arrangement which sounds ill in the ears of the people; who will certainly be displeased at what has been told me, if it be true, viz., that yesterday the King, immediately on receiving news of the decapitation of the putain (deceased) entered his barge and went to the said Semel (age 27), whom he has lodged a mile from him, in a house by the river. Cannot write to the Emperor for the haste of the courier, but will send particulars to him shortly. London, 20 May 1536.Fr., from a modern copy, p. 1.

Letters 1536. 06 Jun 1536. Vienna Archives. 1069. Chapuys (age 46) to Charles V.

On the 24th of this month, the Eve of Ascension Day, immediately on the arrival of the courier who was despatched to Pontremolo, Cromwell sent me the packet which your Majesty had forwarded to that place, begging that I would impart my news to him without delay. Shortly afterwards he sent to say that he would come and see me, but as, owing to his being so much occupied, he had failed in a like promise two days before, I, in order to put him under greater obligation, went to see him. On my arrival he told me that he had been to Court that morning, only to obtain audience for me, which the King had granted for next day. The said courier had brought letters from their ambassador, giving such news of the sincere goodwill your Majesty bore the King that Cromwell said he was better pleased than if he had gained 100,000 cr.; and he was sure I should find the King otherwise inclined than he had been before, both as regards the principal matter and also as to myself in particular, for I had greatly increased the affection he bore me on account of certain letters I had lately written to him, of which I send a copy to Grandvelle; also that by the death of the Concubine (deceased) matters would be more easily arranged now than they had been. He said it was he who had discovered and followed up the affair of the Concubine (deceased), in which he had taken a great deal of trouble, and that, owing to the displeasure and anger he had incurred upon the reply given to me by the King on the third day of Easter, he had set himself to arrange the plot (a fantasier et conspirer led. affaire), and one of the things which had roused his suspicion and made him enquire into the matter was a prognostic made in Flanders threatening the King with a conspiracy of those who were nearest his person. On this he praised greatly the sense, wit, and courage of the said Concubine (deceased) and of her brother (deceased). And to declare to me further the hope of good success, he informed me in great confidence that the King, his master, knowing the desire and affection of all his people, had determined in this coming Parliament to declare the Princess (age 20) his heir; but by what he said afterwards, which I shall partly report, he left me in much greater doubt than before. For, besides requesting me in speaking to the King not to make any request on the Princess's behalf, and, if she were mentioned, not to speak of her as Princess, he also told me it was above all things necessary the Princess should write a letter to her father according to a draft that Cromwell had drawn up in the most honorable and reasonable form that could be, and that to solicit the Princess to do this he had, by the King's command, sent to her a very confidential lady; but, in any case, to avoid scruple, the King wished I would write to her, and send her one of my principal servants to persuade her to make no difficulty about writing the said letter, which he would have translated from English into Latin, that I might see that it was quite honorable. This translation he gave me next day as I left the Court; and since reading it I have not found the said Cromwell, to tell him my opinion of it, although I begged him the day before, when he spoke about it, to take care that it did not contain anything which could directly or indirectly touch her right, or the honor either of herself or of the late Queen, her mother, nor yet her conscience; otherwise she would not consent thereto for all the gold in the world, and the King's indignation against her would only be increased; and that he whom the said Princess regarded as almost a father, ought to take good care that the whole was free from danger and scruple. This, he said, he had done, as I should see by the tenor of the letter, of which I send your Majesty the very translation he delivered to me. Besides the evidence that letter contains that there is some bird catching attempted (quy y a de la traynee et pipe), this has been confirmed to me from a good quarter, and I have warned the Princess. I mean to get out of it (de me demesler) and dissemble the affair as much as I can, without speaking or writing of it till I have understood the intention of those here on the principal article of the negotiations. I shall excuse myself for not having sent to the Princess by saying that the messenger (icelluy) to whom I had committed the translation had lost it in returning from Court. When I have learned their intention I shall not fail to make the necessary remonstrances as to the unreasonableness of the letter, and seek all means possible to moderate such rigour; nevertheless your Majesty will be pleased to instruct me what to say and do in case the King insist on having the letter entirely written by the Princess, and that otherwise he means to punish her, as the lady sent by the King to the Princess has given a servant of mine to understand.

Letters 1536. 06 Jun 1536. Vienna Archives. 1070. Chapuys (age 46) to [Granvelle].

Thanks him for his kindness, as shown in the letters received from George. Writes fully in cipher to the Emperor. The King wishes to be mediator of the peace, and, if not, to have a just occasion and honorable means to declare against France. Does not think he will join France against the Emperor unless the French will renounce their obedience to the Pope. The Council are very pleased at being free from their subjection to France, which led them by the nose. Advises the Emperor to write the King letters of congratulation and thanks for what he has done for the Princess. It would be well also to write to the Treasurer Fitzwilliam, a man of sense and a good servant of the Princess.

Letters 1536. 06 Jun 1536. Vienna Archives. 1070. Chapuys (age 46) to [Granvelle].

Sends a copy of a letter he wrote to the King a little after the arrest of the lady (Anne Boleyn). Showed it to Cromwell before sending it, but he altered nothing. The King was pleased with it, as Chapuys writes to the Emperor.

Post Execution Sources

Letters 1536. 06 Jun 1536. Vienna Archives. 1070. Chapuys (age 46) to [Granvelle].

The night before Anne (deceased) was beheaded she talked and jested, saying, among other things, that those bragging, clever persons who had invented an unheard-of name for the good Queen would not find it hard to invent one for her, for they would call her "la Royne Anne sans teste;" and then she laughed heartily, though she knew she must die the next day. She said, the day before she was executed, and when they came to lead her to the scaffold, that she did not consider that she was condemned by Divine judgment, except for having been the cause of the ill-treatment of the Princess, and for having conspired her death.

Letters 1536. 06 Jun 1536. Vienna Archives. 1070. Chapuys (age 46) to [Granvelle].

Though he has perceived nothing, thinks that the English in making a new treaty would stipulate for the restitution of what France occupies of theirs, and perhaps would wish to be assured that the Emperor would not molest them for their disobedience to the Holy See. Wishes to know how to act if this be so. One of the King's chamber said to one of Chapuys' men that the day after the execution the ambassadors offered Madame Magdalene to the King. He replied that she was too young for him, and he had too much experience of French bringing up in the case of the concubine. The same person said also that the woman whom the king of Scots had now taken had formerly given him a bastard. Having married her to another person, who has long lived with her, he now wishes to marry her; at which this King is displeased.

The Emperor already had the hearts of all here, but this affection is much increased by what he said in Consistory. The Duke of Suffolk (age 52) said it would profit his Majesty more than gaining one or two great battles. Though Suffolk is a pensioner of France and a knight of the Order, he hates the French on account of their intelligence with the Turk. London, 6 June 1535 (sic).

Letters and Papers 1538. 23 Mar 1538. Spanish Calendar, V. ii. No. 220. 583. Chapuys (age 48) to the Queen of Hungary (age 32).

She has done well in writing to Cromwell (age 53), who was much gratified by her letter. The French ambassadors have had difficulty in getting an interview with the King (age 46), and were ill received; on which the Bishop of Tarbes said to the Venetian secretary he would do his best to promote a peace between the Emperor and France. Next day the Bishop received a present of 500 cr. and 150 cr. for a gentleman of his suite; but he has not yet got his passports, which the King (age 46) will probably not give till he has heard from Spain. On the same day, the 18th, the painter (age 41) returned with the Duchess' (age 16) likeness, which has pleased the King (age 46) much, and put him in much better humour. He has been masking and visiting the Duchess of Suffolk (age 19), &c. Does not think, however, that he is pleased at the meeting arranged between the Pope, the Emperor, and Francis. London, 23 March 1538.From a MS. at Vienna.

1541 Executions

Letters and Papers 1541. 10 Jun 1541. 897. Chapuys (age 51) to the Queen of Hungary.

If the affair is mentioned, will follow her instructions in her letter of the 28th ult. Expects to be summoned before the King (age 49) two days hence. Is vexed at not having received the copy of her answer to the King, referred to in his despatch of 26 May. The news since that date is that on the 27th three of the chief conspirators in the North - an abbot and two gentlemen - were hung and quartered. About the same time took place the lamentable execution of the countess of Salisbury (deceased) at the Tower [Map] in presence of the Lord Mayor and about 150 persons. When informed of her sentence she found it very strange, not knowing her crime; but she walked to the space in front of the Tower, where there was no scaffold but only a small block. She there commended her soul to God, and desired those present to pray for the King, Queen, Prince, and Princess. The ordinary executioner being absent, a blundering "garçonneau" was chosen, who hacked her head and shoulders to pieces. A most virtuous lady nearly 90 years of age. When her death was resolved on her nephew (grandson) (age 21), the son of lord Montague, who had been allowed occasionally to go about within the Tower, was more strictly guarded. It is to be supposed he will soon follow his father and grandmother. London, 10 June 1541. Original at Vienna.

Letters and Papers 1541. 02 Jul 1541. 954. Chapuys (age 51) to the Queen of Hungary.

Almost immediately after Chapuys's return the King (age 50) gave the people of Dunkirk permission to buy here a quantity of wood for their own use for curing herrings, and he has frequently reminded Chapuys of the favor, saying he was surprised that the town had not sent a deputation to say how much wood they required. The deputation has arrived, and now, after being kept 13 days without an answer, they have been told that it is mere loss of time to solicit such things till the Queen has promised to release the harness, copper, and war ammunition purchased by the King some time ago at Antwerp.

On St. Peter's eve lord Leonard (deceased), uncle of the Marquis of Osceter (age 24) (Dorset) and of the Chancellor's (age 53) wife, was beheaded in front of the Tower [Map]. Hears he was accused of letting his nephew (age 16), the young Earl of Kildare, escape to France and thence to Liege.

That afternoon two gentlemen were hung, one of whom had an income of over 12,000 ducats a year, and was the handsomest and best bred man in England [Note. Not clear as to who this is? If anyone has information on the identity of this person I'd be grateful if they would email Christopher Smith.], only 25 years old and married to a niece of the Duke of Norfolk (age 68). He was sentenced for having belonged to a set of eight rakish youths, one of whom had killed a poor old man in an unpremeditated fray. For the same cause lord Dacres (deceased) also, son1 of the Duke of Norfolk's (age 68) sister, and cousin of this Queen (age 18), 23 years old and possessing a property of about 5,000 ducats a year, was hung from the most ignominious gibbet, and for greater shame dragged through the streets to the place of execution, to the great pity of many people, and even of his very judges, who wept when they sentenced him, and in a body asked his pardon of the King. But the thing which astonished people most was, that, the same day lord Dacres was hung, another young man (age 28), son of the Treasurer of the Royal household (age 56), who was one of those present at the old man's death, was freely pardoned, though he had been already tried for some like misdemeanour.

At the same time in the North, Sir John Neville (deceased) and about 60 more, among whom at least 25 were ecclesiastics, were executed for the conspiracy of which Chapuys wrote some time ago. Has just heard of the arrival of a Polish gentleman with eight or ten servants. Will endeavour to discover who he is and what he comes for. London, 2 July 1541. Original at Vienna.

Note 1. Thomas Fiennes 9th Baron Dacre Gilsland (deceased), Lord Dacre, was the grandson of Anne Bourchier Baroness Dacre of Gilsland who was the maternal half-sister of Thomas Howard 3rd Duke of Norfolk (age 68); Anne and Thomas' mother was Elizabeth Tilney Countess of Surrey.

On 21 Jan 1556 Eustace Chapuys (age 66) died.