A report and discourse written by Roger Ascham, of the affaires and state of Germany and the Emperour Charles his court, duryng certaine yeares while the sayd Roger was there
by Ascham, Roger, 1515-1568.
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Publisher: Text Creation Partnership; William Andrews Clark Memorial Library (University of California, Los Angeles)
Place of Publication: Ann Arbor, MI ; Oxford (UK) ; Los Angeles, CA
Date of Publication: 2005-10 (EEBO-TCP Phase 1)
Date of Publication: 2015-12 (Clark Library Annotated Books Pilot Project)
ID: STC 830
ID: ESTC S100282
ID: PR2201 .R41 *
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Title: A report and discourse written by Roger Ascham, of the affaires and state of Germany and the Emperour Charles his court, duryng certaine yeares while the sayd Roger was there
Author: Ascham, Roger, 1515-1568.
Physical Description: , 33 leaves
Imprint: Printed by Iohn Daye, dwelling ouer Aldersgate, At London : [1570?]
Notes: Publication date conjectured by STC. At the foot of title: Cum gratia & priuilegio Regiae Maiestatis, per decennium. Running title reads: A discours and affaires of the state of Germanie. Reproduction of the original held at the William Andrews Clark Memorial Library (UCLA)
LOC Subject: Germany -- History -- Charles V, 1519-1556 -- Early works to 1800.
[Page/Sig: front cover][BINDING]
❧ A REPORT
and Discourse written by
Roger Ascham, of the affaires
and state of Germany and the
Emperour Charles his court,
duryng certaine yeares
while the sayd Roger
¶Printed by Iohn Daye,
dwelling ouer Aldersgate.
¶ Cum Gratia & Priuilegio Regiae
Maiestatis, per Decennium.[Page/Sig: A2r]
I Now finde true by experience, which I haue oft heard of others, & sometymes read my selfe: that men make no such accompt of commodities when they haue them, as when they want them. I meane this by our frendly fellow shyp together at Che ston Chelsey, and here at Hatfield her graces house: our pleasant studies in readyng together Aristotles Rethorike, Cicero, and Li uie: our free talke mingled alwayes with honest mirth: our trimme conferences of that present world: and to true iudgementes of the troublesome tyme that followed.
These commodities I now remember with some grief, which we then vsed with much pleasure, besides many other fruites of frendshyp that faythfull good will could affourd. And these thinckynges cause me oft to wish, either you to be here with vs, or me to be there with you: What Wishing is nothing else but A vaine wayling for that wch will wanteth but what wishyng is nothyng els but a vayne waylyng for that which will wanteth, I wil cease from wishyng, and seeke the true remedy for this sore. And that is whilest we mete agayne in deede, in the meane while to ease our desires with oft writyng the one to the other: I would in deede I had bene partaker in your com pany, of that your pleasant absence out of your [Page/Sig: A2v] countrey: And because I was not, I pray you let me be partaker by your letters of some fruite of that your iourney.
We heare of great sturres in those parties: and how the Emperour a Prince of great wisedome and great power hath bene driuen to extreme shiftes, and that by the pollicie of mean men who were thought to be hys frendes, and not by the puisant nes of others who were knowne to be his open ene myes. I know you were wont in markyng diligently and notyng truely all such great affaires: And you know lykewise how desirous I am alwayes to read any thing that you write. Write therfore I pray you, that we your frendes beyng at home may enioye by your letters a pleasant memory of you in this tyme whilest you be absent abroad. Farewell in Christ from Hatfield .xix. Octobris. 1552.[Page/Sig: A3r]
SAlutem Plurimam in Christo Iesu. That part of your letters from Hatfield, decimo nono Octob. renewing a most pleasaunt memory of our frendly fellowship together, & full of your wonted good will towardes me: I aunswered immediatly from Spires by Fraunces the post: whiche letter if it be not yet come to your hand, ye might haue heard tell of it in M. Secretary Cicels chamber in the Court.
As concernyng the other part of your letter, for your wish, to haue bene with me, in this mine absence from my countrey: and for your request, to be made partaker by my letters of the sturre of these times here in Germany. Surely I would you had your wish: for then should not I now nede to bungle vp yours so great a request, when presently you should haue sene with much pleasure, which now peraduenture you shall read with some doubt, lesse thynges may encrease by writyng which were so great in doyng, as I am more afrayd to leaue behind me much of the mat ter, then to gather vp more then hath sprong of the trouth.
Your request conteineth few wordes but comprehendeth both great and diuers matters. As first the causes of the open inuasion by the Turke: of the secret workyng for such soddeyne brechesse [Page/Sig: A3v] in Italy, and Germany: of the fine fetches in the French practises: of the double dealyng of Rome with all partes: then more particularly why Duke Octauio, the Prince of Salerne, Marches Albert, and Duke Maurice brake so out with the Emperour, which were all so fast knit vnto hym as the bondes of affinitie, loyaltie, bloud, and benefites could assure him of them: Octauio being his sonne in law, the Prince one of hys priuy chamber, Marches Albert hys kynsman, and Duke Mau rice so inhaunsed with honor and enriched with benefites by hym, as the Duke could not haue wished greater in hope, then the Emperour per formed in deede. Here is stuffe plenty to furnish well vp a trimme history if a workeman had it in handlyng. When you and I read Liuie together if you do remember, after some reasonyng we con cluded both what was in our opinion to be loo ked for at his hand that would well and aduisedly write an history: What thinges a writer of an history shold chiefly respect First, point was, to write no thyng false: next, to be bold to say any truth, wher by is auoyded two great faultes, flattery and hatred: C. Caesar. P. Iouius. For which two pointes Caesar is read to his great prayse, and Iouius the Italian to hys iust reproch. Then to marke diligently the causes, counsels, actes, and issues in all great attemptes: And in causes, what is iust or unjust: in counsels, what is purposed wisely or rashly: in actes, what is done couragiously or fayntly: And of euery issue, to note some generall lesson of wisedome & wari nes, Polibius. Phi. Comines. for lyke matters intime to come: wherin Polibius in Greeke and Phillip Comines in French [Page/Sig: A4r] haue done the duties of wyse and worthy writers. Diligence also must be vsed in kepyng truly the order of tyme: and describyng lyuely, both the site of places and nature of persons not onely for the outward shape of the body: but also for the in ward disposition of the mynde as Thucidides doth in many places very trimly, Thucidides. Homer. and Homer euery where and that alwayes most excellently, which obseruation is chiefly to be marked in hym. And our Chaucer doth the same, very praise worthely: marke hym well and conferre hym with any other that writeth of in our tyme in their proudest toung whosoeuer lyst. Chaucer. The stile must be alwayes playne and open: yet sometime higher and lower as matters do ryse and fall: for if proper and naturall wordes, in well ioyned sentences do lyuely expresse the matter, be it troublesome, quyet, angry or pleasant, A man shal thincke not to be rea dyng but present in doyng of the same. And here in Liuie of all other in any toung, Titus Liuius. by myne opinion carieth away the prayse.
Syr Thomas More in that pamphlet of Ri chard the thyrd, Tho. Morus. doth in most part I beleue of all these pointes so content all men, as if the rest of our story of England were so done, we might well compare with Fraunce, Italy, or Germany or any other in that behalfe. But see how the pleasant remembraunce of our old talke together hath caried me farther then I thought to go. And as for your request to know the cause and maner of these late sturres here ye shall not looke for such precise order now in writyng, as we talked on then. No it [Page/Sig: A4v] is not all one thing to know perfectly by reading and to performe perfectly in doyng I am not so vnaduised to take so much vpon me, nor you so vnfrendly to looke for so much from me. But that you may know that I haue not bene altogether idle in this my absence, and that I will not come home as one that can say nothing of that he hath sene and heard abroad: I will homely and rudely (yet not altogether disorderly) part priuately vnto you such notes of affaires as I priuately marked for my selfe: which I either felt and saw, or learned in such place and of such persons as had willes to seeke for, and wayes to come by, and wittes to way the greatest matters that were to be marked in all these affaires. For no wieke almost hath past in the which there hath not commonly come to my hand for the most part of the notable thynges that haue bene attempted in Turky, Hungary, Italy, Fraunce, and Germany. In declaryng to you these thyngs I will obserue onely the first two pointes of our wont commu nication: that is to my writyng I will set forward nothyng that is false, nor yet keepe backe any thyng that is true. For I playing no part of no one side, but littyng downe as indifferent looker on, neither Imperiall nor French, but flat En glish do purpose with troth to report the matter. And seyng I shall lyue vnder such a Prince, as kyng Edward is, and in such a countrey as England is (I thanke God) I shall haue neither neede to flatter the one side for profite, nor cause to feare the other side for displeasure. Therefore let my [Page/Sig: B1r] purpose of reportyng the troth as much content you, as the meane handlyng of the matter may mislike you. Yet speakyng thus much of trouth, I meane not such a hid trouth as was onely in the brest of Monsieur d'Arras on the Emperours side, or in Baron Hadeck on Duke Maurice side, with whom and with on other of his counsell he onely conferred all his purposes three yeares be fore he brake out with ye Emperour: but I meane such a troth as by conference and common consent amongest all the Ambassadors and Agentes in Agentes. this Court and other witty & indifferent heades beside was generally conferred and agreed vpon. What better commoditie to know the trouth any writer in Greeke Latine or other toung hath had, I can not perceiue, except onely Xenophon, Cae sar, and Phillip Comines: which two first worthy The praise of Zenophon and Cesar writers wrote their owne actes so wisely, and so without all suspicion of parcialitie, as no man he therto by mine opinion hath borne him selfe so vprightly in writyng the histories of others: The Philipp Comines./ thyrd hauyng in a maner ye like oportunitie hath not deserued lyke commendations, at least as I suppose. England hath matter & England hath men furnished with all abilitie to write: who if they would might bryng both lyke prayse vnto them selues, & like profite to others, as these two noble men haue done. They lay for their excuse the lacke of leysure which is true in deede: But if we consider the great affaires of Caesar we may iudge hee was worthy to winne all praise that was so willing & wittie to winne such time when his head & [Page/Sig: B1v] his handes night and day were euer most full, would to God that these out men as they are ready to prayse hym were euen as willyng to follow hym, and so to wynne like prayse them selues.
And to keepe you no longer with my priuate talke from the matter it selfe, I will begyn at the spryng of the matter from whence all these mis chiefes dyd flow, The cause of ye sturres in Italy & Germany. the which now hath so ouerflowed the most part of Christendome, as God onely from heauen must make an end of this mi serable tragedie, wherein these two great Prin ces take such pleasure still to play. In Religion & libertie were sayd to be of many men the very causes of all these sturres: yet in myne opinion & as the matter it selfe shall well proue it, Unkyndnes. vnkyndnes was the very sede, whereof all these troubles dyd grow. A Knight of England of worthy me morie for wit learnyng and experience old Syr Thomas Wiat wrote to his sonne that the greatest mischief amongest men and least punished is vnkyndnes: Sir Thomas Wiats saying of Vnkyndnes the greatest mischief truly & least punished also by any ordinary law & sentence, yet as I haue sene here by experience, vnkyndnes hath so wrought with men, as the meane were not affrayd to attempt their reuenge, nor the Emperour able to withstand their displease. Yea vnkynd nes was onely the hoke, which Henry the French kyng hath vsed these late yeares to plucke from the Emperour and draw to hym selfe, so many Princes and great commodities as he hath: with this hoke bayted with money the bayte of all mischief, money the baite of all mischief the French kyng hath not ceased, to angle at [Page/Sig: B2r] as many harts in Italy and Germany as he knew any matter of vnkyndnes to bee ministred vnto, by the Emperour. There be few Princes in all the Empire but if I had leysure, I could particularly proue, and when I come home in our priuate talke I wil fully declare that some good big matter of vnkindnes hath bene offred vnto them by the Emperour. The emperor vnkynd to most princes of the empyre Yea Ferdinando his brother, Maximilian his nephew and sonne in law, the Dukes of Bauarie and Cleues which haue maried his nieces haue bene shrewdly touched therwith. Also ye Papisticall Byshops as Mentz, Pamburge, Herbipolis, Saltzburge, and diuers others haue felt their part herein. Few Princes or states, Protestantes or Papistes, but haue bene troubled therwith. But euen as a quaterne in the begynnyng is a wanderyng disease in the body vnknowne what it wil turne vnto, and yet at last it draweth to certaine dayes & houres: euen so these grieues in the whole body of the Empire dyd first worke secretly and not appeare openly, vntill this me lancholy vnkyndnes did so swell in mens sto maches that at length in Insburgh it brast out in to a shrewdsicknes, whereof the first fit was felt to be so daungerous, that if the Emperour and we had not more spedely chaunged the ayre, I am affrayed and sure I am we were wel affrayd then, the sickenes would haue proued also to vs that were present with hym very contagious. Well this grief growyng this to certaine fittes, and I my selfe beyng not greatly greued at ye hart with it but had leysure enough with small ieoperdy (I [Page/Sig: B2v] thanke God) to looke quietly vpon them that were sicke, because I would not be idle amongst them I began dayly to note the workyng of this sickenes, and namely from the xix. of May. 1552. when we ranne from Insburgh till the first of next Ianuary when the siege of Metz was abandoned. Neuertheles before I come to these ordinary dayes I will shortly touch how the Emperour beyng in peace with all the world. 1550. when we came to his Court, had soone after so many enemyes as hee knew not which way to turne hym.
The brech with the Turke. THe date of peace betwixt the Emperour and the Turke had to expire an .1551. The Emperour hearyng what preparation the Turke had made the yeare before for warre and specially by Sea, which must needes be agaynst Christendome, thought it better for him to ende the peace with some aduauntage, then that the Turke should begyn the warre with too much strength & therfore in sommer .1550. he sent Iohn de Vega Viceroy of Cicile & Andrea Dorea into Barbaria, who wan the strong towne of Affrica from Dragut Raies sometyme a Pirate and now the Turkes chief doer in all the affaires of Affrike and mare mediteraneo. This Court raised vp other rumors of this brech with the Turke how that this enterprice was made for Seripho sake a hethen kyng. But the Emperours frend in Barbaria to whom Dragat Rayes had done great wrong, yet men [Page/Sig: B3r] that knew the truth, and are wont also to say it, haue told me that the towne of Affrica stode so fit to annoy Spayne for the Turke when he lift, that the Emperour was compelled to seeke by all meaner to obtaine it, much fearyng, lest when he was absent in Germany, the Turke would be too nigh and to homely a gett with hym in Spayne whensoeuer the peace should be expired. Affrica in BarbariaThe whole story of winnyng Affrica ye may read when you list beyng wel written in Latin by a Spaniard that was present at it.
Affrica was earnestly required agayne by the Turke, and fayre promised agayne by the Emperour, but beyng in deede not deliuered, the Turke for a reuenge the next yeare, first assaulted Malta and after wan Tripoly Tripoly in barbara from whence the Turke may easely and soddenly whensoeuer hee list set vpon Cicelie, Naples, or any cost of Italie or Spayne and most commodiously, what soeuer the Emperour doth hold in Barbary: so that the gayne of Affrica is thought nothyng comparable with the losse of Tripoly.
When Tripoly was besieged by the Turkes, Monsieur Daramont was sent Ambassadour to Constantinople from the French kyng: and ariuyng by the way at Malta, hee was desired by the great master of the order to go to Tripoly, and for the frendshyp that was betwene Fraunce and the Turke to treat for the Christians there. Daramont did so and had leake of the Turkes generall to enter the towne and talke with the Captaine. And by this madnes they within yelded, on this condition [Page/Sig: B3v] to part safe with bag and baggage which was graunted by the generall. But assoone as the Turkes entred the towne they put old & yong, man, woman, and child to the sword sauing two hundred of the strongest men to be their Galley slaues for euer. The generall beyng asked why he kept no promise made this aunswere: If the Em perour had kept faith with my master for Affrica I would not haue broken with them of Tripoly, and therefore (sayth he) with Christen men which care for no trothe promises may iustly be broken. This Turkish crueltie was reuenged this last yeare in Hungary, when lyke promise of lyfe was made, and yet all put to the sword the Christians biddyng the Turkes remember Tripoly. To such beastly crueltie the noble feates of armes be come vnto betwixt the Christen men and the Turkes. And one fact of either side is notable to bee knowen, yet horrible to be told and fouler to be followed: and it is pitie that mans nature is such, as will commonlie commend good thynges in readyng and yet will as commonly follow ill thynges in doyng.
The Bassa of Buda, tooke in a skirmish a gentle man of the kyng of Romanes for whose deliuery men for entreaty and money for hys raunsome were sent to Buda. An horrible face. The Bassa appointed a day to geue them aunswere and at time and place assig ned, called for them and sent for the gentleman likewise. And soddenly came out two hangmen bare armed with great butchers kniues in theyr handes bringing with them certaine bandogges [Page/Sig: B4r] musled kept hungry without meate: of purpose: the Bassa bad them do their feate: who commyng to the gentleman stripped him naked, and bound him to a piller, after with their kniues they cut of his flesh by gobbets and flang it to the dogges. Thus ye poore gentleman suffred grief great for y e payne, but greater for the spight: nor so tormented in feelyng his fleshe mangled with kniues, as in seyng him selfe peece meale deuoured by dogges. And thus as long as hee felt any payne they cut him in collops, and after they let their dogges lose vpon him to eate vp the residue of him, that ye grief which was ended in him being dead might yet continue in his frendes lookyng on. They were bad depart and tell what they saw, who ye may be sure were in care enough to cary home with them such a cruell message.
Not long after this, three Turkes of good esti mation and place, were taken by the Christen men: for whose raunsome great summes of gold were offred. Aunswere was made to the messen ger that all the gold in Turky should not saue them. the turkes will eate no swynes flesheAnd because ye Turkes will eate no swines flesh, you shall see if swine will eate any Turkish fleshe. And so likewise great bores were kept hungry, & in sight of the messenger the three Turkes were cut in collops and throwne amongest them.
For these foule deedes I am not so angry with the Turkes that began them as I am sory for the Christen men that follow them. I talked with a worthy gentleman this day both for his great experience and excellent learnyng Marc Anthonio d'Anula Ambassadour of Venice with the Empe rour: The great Turke. who told me that the great Turke him selfe (Religion excepted) is a good and mercyfull, iust and liberall Prince, wise in makyng and true in performyng any couenant, and as sore a reuenger of troth not kept.Mustapha the Turkes eldest sonne He prayed God to kepe him long aliue: for his eldest sonne Mustapha is cleane contrary, geuen to all mischief cruell, false, gettyng he careth not how vniustly, and spendyng he careth not how vnthriftely what soeuer he may lay hand on, wilye in makyng for his purpose, & ready to breake for his profite all couenantes, he is wery of quietnes and peace, a seeker of strife and warre, a great mocker of meane men, a sore op pressor of poore men, openly contemnyng God, and a bent enemy agaynst Christes name and Christen men. But to go forward with my purpose. The Turke beyng onest disclosed an open enemy to the Emperour, many meane men began to be the bolder to put out their heades to seeke some open remedy for theyr priuate iniuries: Fraunce beyng at euery mans elbow to harten and to helpe, whosoeuer had cause to be aggreued with the Emperour.Brech of Italie. And first Octauio Duke of Parma, much agreued as nature well required with his fathers death & besides that fearing the losse not onely of his state, but also of his lyfe, fell from the Emperour in the end of the yeare .1550.
Pietro Aloysio Farnesio sonne to Papa Paulo tercio Duke of Placentia: father to this Duke Octauio Duke of Parma which maried the Emperors base daughter, Octauio. and to Horatio Duke of Castro, [Page/Sig: C1r] who of late hath maried also the French kynges base daughter, and the two Cardinals Alexan dro and Ramusio Farnesy, was slaine men say by the meanes of Ferranto Gonzaga gouernour of Millan by whose death the state of Placentia belonging then to the house of Fernesia came into the Emperour handes. The whole processe of this mans death is at length set out in the stories of Italie: my purpose is onely to touch it, because hereby rose such a heate betwixt the whole famely of Fernesia and Don Ferranto Gonzaga as hath stirred vp such a smoke in Italy betwixt the Emperour and Fraunce. as is not like to be quenched but with many a poore mans bloud, as Horace noteth wittely out of Homer, saying: Quicquid delicant reges plectuntur achiui What follies so euer great Princes make: The people therfore go to wrake.
Octauio beyng sorest greeued with his fathers death and beyng best able to reuenge it was so feared of Gonzaga that he thought hym selfe ne uer assured for Petro Luis death as long as Octauio his sonne should lyue: It is a setled rule of Machiavell; that where you have once doone a greate Iniurye; there must you never forgeve for men neuer loue when they haue iust cause to feare, but must nedes still mistrust without all hope of reconcilyng whom they haue before hurt beyond all remedy of amendes. And yet I heard a gentleman of Millan say (who was sent hether to the Emperour by Gonzaga) that Octauio is such a Prince for good nature and gentle behauiour that he supposed there was not one in Italy but did loue hym ex cept it were his maister Gonzaga. These two [Page/Sig: C1v] Princes beyng neighbours the one at Millan the other at Parma shewed smal frendshyp the one to the other. But Octauio was euermore wrong to the worse by many and sundry spites, but chiefly with dayly feare of hys life by poysoning: for the which fact certain persons in Parma were taken and layd fast. Neuertheles Octauios nature is so farre from seekyng bloud and reuenge and so ge uen to pitie and gentlenes, that although they went about not onely to geue away his state by treason, but also to take away his life by poyso nyng, yea, and after that the deede was proued playnly on them, and sentence of death pronounced openly agaynst them, yet he gaue them lyfe and libertie which would haue taken both from hym.
And when Monsieur Thermes earnestly told him that where the euill were not kept in with feare of Iustice, the good should neuer lyue in su retie and quietnes: his aunswere was that he so abhorred the sheddyng of bloud in others as he would neuer wash his handes in any: let his enemies do to him the worst they could. Addyng, that he thought it his most honor to be vnlykest such for his gentlenes which were misliked of all men for their crueltie: wherby he hath wonne that he which of good nature can hurt none, is now of right loued of all and onely hated of him whom no man in Italy for his cruelty doth loue. And this talke is so true that it was told in an other language but in the selfe same termes at an honorable table here in Bruxels by a gentleman [Page/Sig: C2r] of Millan an agent in the Court, a doer for Gonzaga, who the same tyme was prisoner in Parma.
And although Octauio by good nature was harmeles in not seekyng reuenge, yet he was not careles by good reason in seekyng hys remedy but made oft & great conplaintes of his grieues to the Emperour, which were not so hotely made, but they were as coldly heard, that at length Octauio findyng least comfort, where of right he looked for most ayde, & seyng that displeasures could not be ended in Gonzaga nor could would not be amen ded by the Emperour: then he compelled agaynst his nature turned his hate due to Gonzaga to reuenge this vndeserued vnkyndnes in the Emperour, euen as Pausanias dyd with Phillip kyng of Macedonie, who conqueryng with pollicie and power all outward enemyes, was slayne when and where, he thought him selfe most sure of his dearest frend, for vnkindnes, because Phillip ought and would not reuenge Pausanias on him that had done him a foule displeasure. Philipp King of macedonis slayne by Pausanias, for vnkyndnes: bycause Philipp ought and would not revenge Pausanias on him that had done him a foule displeasure./
Octauio seyng what was done to his father euen when hys graundfather was Byshop of Rome, thought, that now as his house decayed, so his iopardy encreased. And therfore agaynst a desperate euill began to seeke for a desperate remedie, which was set from Rome a shop alwayes open to any mischief as you shall perceiue in these few leaues if you marke them well. Rome a shoppe alwayes open to any mischiefe./
Octauio complained to Iulio tercio of the wronges of Gonzaga & of the vnkindnes of the Emperour, desiryng that by his wisedome and authoritie, he [Page/Sig: C2v] would now succor him or els not onely he should leese his life but also the Church of Rome should lose her right in Parma, as she had done before in Placentia. The Byshop gaue good eare to this talke, for he spied that hereby should be offred vn to him, a fit occasion to set the Emperour and Fraunce together by the eares. He thought the Emperour was to bigge in Italy hauyng on ye one side of Rome Naples vnder his obedience, on the other side Siena, Florence and Genoa at his commaundement, besides Placentia, Millan, Monteferrato, and a great part of Piemount.
The Emperour beyng thus strong in Italy, the Byshop thought his own state to be his so long as it pleased the Emperour to let him haue it: & therfore if Parma were not left an entry for Fraunce to come into Italy, he might ouersoone be shut vp in present miserie when all outward ayde should be shut out from him.
The Popes counsel was that Octauio should put him selfe vnder the French kynges protection whom hee knew would most willingly receiue him: Parma lying so fit for the French kyng, when soeuer he would set vpon the enterprice of Millan. This practise of the Pope Monsieur de Thermes the French kynges Ambassadours dyd vtter before the consistorie of Cardinals at Rome: prouing that the Pope, not the kyng his master was the occasion of that warre.
When Octauio with the whole house of Far nesia became thus French, the Emperour more fearyng the state of Millan then lamentyng the losse [Page/Sig: C3r] of Octauio persuaded on his side the Byshop of Rome to require Parma as the Churches right, & to punish Octauio as the Churches rebell, promi sing that he him selfe as an obedient sonne of the Church would stretch out his arme and open his purse in that recouery of the Churches right: neuertheles the Byshop must beare the name of the warre because hee might not breake peace with Fraunce. Thus Princes openly coutenācing quietnes & priuily brewyng debate although they got others to broch it, yet God commonly suffreth them selues to drinke most of the misery thereof in the end. The Byshop seyng that he must either be gyn the mischief or els it would not on so fast as he wished to haue it, set lustely vpon it: and first cited Octauio, after excommunicated him, and shortly after besieged Parma ayded both with men and money by the Emperour: which thyng the French kyng began to stomach, Breach w t Fraunce. thinckyng that ye Emperour dyd offer him both wrong & dishonor in not suffring him beyng a kyng to helpe a poore man that fled to his ayde. And thus these two Princes first helpyng others began by litle and litle to fall out them selues. And that the Pope dyd set these two Princes together, a Pasquill made at Rome and sent to this Court doth well declare. And seyng that you so well vnderstand the Italian toung and that if it were turned into English it would leese the whole grace therof, I will recite it in the toung that it was made in.Interlocutori Pasquillo et Romano. Pasq. HAnno vn bel gioco il Re, et l'Imperatore per terzo el Papá, e giocano à Primera. Rom. che v' e d' in vito? Pasq. Italia tutta intera. Rom. Chi vi l' ha messa? Pasq. il coglion del pastore. Rom. Che tien in mano il Re? Pasq. Ponto magiere el Papa hacinquant' vno, e se despera. Rom. Caesar che Ponto sa? Pasq. lui sta a Primera Rom. che gli manca? Pasq. danari a far sauore Il Papa dice à voí, e voll Partito: Caesar Pensoso sta Sopra di questo, teme à Scropir di trouar moneta Il Re dico, no, no, Scoprite Presto, che io tengo Ponto, a guadagnar l' in vito I ho li danari, et Caesar se gli aspeta. ¶Tutti stanno a vedetta. Chi di lor dui guadagni. Rom. il Papa? Pas. e fuora vinca chi vol, lui Perda, in sua mal hora. ¶Le Jmperatore anchora. Teme, étien stretto, è Scopre Piau le carte. e qui, la sorte gioca, pin che l' Arte. ¶Metra questi indisparte. Stabilito e nel Ciel quelle, che esserdé, ne giona al nostro dic, questo Sara questo è.
The French king in the sommer .1551. proclaimed warre against Charles kyng of Spayne, abu sing that name for a sottlety to separate y e whole quarell from the Empire: when the Emperour [Page/Sig: C4r] would not be persuaded at Augusta that either the Turke would, or the French kyng durst make him open warre, or that any Prince in Italy or Germany could be entised to breake out with him.
Monsieur Mariliacke the French Ambassadour at Augusta euer bare the Emperour in hand that such rumors of war were raysed of displeasure & that his master intended nothyng so much as the continuance of amitie, yea this he durst do, when many in ye Emperours court knew that the war was already proclaimed in Fraunce.
The Emperour blinded with the ouer good opinion of his own wisedome, likyng onely what himselfe listed, and contemnyng easely all aduise of others (which selfe will condition doth commonly follow, and as commonly doth hurt all great wittes) dyd not onely at this tyme suffer him selfe thus to be abused: but also afterward more craftely by the Pope for the continuaunce of warre at Parma, & more boldly by Duke Mau rice for his repayre to Inspruke, and not the least of all, now lately at Metz by some of his owne counsellours for the recouery of that towne.
But Princes and great personages whiche will heare but what and whom they list, at the length fayle when they would not, and commonly blame whom they should not: But it is well done that as great men may by authoritie contemne the good aduise of others: so God doth pro uide by right iudgement that they haue leaue in the ende to beare both the losse and shame therof them selues.
[Page/Sig: C4v] Thus ye see how the Pope was both the brewer and brocher and also bringer of ill lucke to both these Princes, and as it came wel to passe dranke well of it him selfe both with expences of great treasures, and with the losse of many lyues and specially of two noble gentlemen, the Prince of Macedonia & Il Seignor. Gionan Baptista di Monte his owne nephew: but the Popes care was nei ther of money nor men, so that he might set the two Princes surely together. And therfore was not onely content (as a man might say) to hasard Parma on the meyne chaunce: but to make the two Princes better sporte & fresher game, set also euen then Mirandula on a bye chaunce that mischief enough might come together.
When the Princes were well in and the one so lusty with good lucke that hee had no lust to leaue, Pope. and the other so chafed with leesyng, that still he would venture. Besides their playing in sporte for the Pope at Parma and Mirandula, Parma. they fell to it a good them selues in Piemount, Mirandula. Loraigne, Flaunders and Picardy, the French kyng robbyng by Sea and spoyling by land, with calling in the Turke, and sturryng vp all Princes and states that had any occasion to beare any grudge to the Emperour. Henry 2. king of france called in the Turke to ayde him in his war against the Emperour./ Of all their neighbours onely our no ble kyng, and the wise senate of Venize would be lookers on.
And when the Pope saw they were so hote at it as he well knew as the one would not start in so great good lucke: so ye other could not leaue by so much shame of losse. And although it did [Page/Sig: D1r] him good to see them cope so lustely together: neuertheles he thought it scarce his surety that they should play so nere his elbow so earnestly, least if they fell to farre out and the one should winne to much of the other, then he peraduenture would compell at length the Pope himselfe which began the play to kepe him sport afterward for that that he had in Italy. And therfore very craftely he gat them to play in an other place,The Popes prac tice. and tooke vp the game for Parma and Mirandula taking truce with Fraunce for certaine yeares, and bad them make what sport they would farther of in Loraigne & Picardy. And that there should lacke neither iniu rie nor spite in the Popes doynges, when the Emperour saw that whether hee would or no, the Pope would needes fall in with Fraunce, then he desired the Pope that such bastilians and fortes of fence as were made about Mirandula when it was besieged might either be deliuered to hys mens handes or els defaced that the Frenchmen might not haue them, which request was very reasonable seyng the Emperour had bene at all the charge in makyng of them: But they were neither deliuered nor defaced, nor left indifferent, but so put into the French mens handes, that Mirandula now is made very strong to the French faction by Emperours money and the Popes falsehode.
This fact was very wrongfull of the Pope for the deede: but more spitefull for the tyme: for euen when Duke Maurice had wonne Augusta, euen then the Pope gaue vp the siege of Mirandula [Page/Sig: D1v] and fell in with Fraunce that care enough might come vppon the Emperour together both out of Germany, and out of Italy at once. And euen this day .25. Iune. 1553. when I was writyng this place, commeth newes to Bruxells, that the Pope hath of new played with the Emperour more foule play at Siena, then he dyd before at Mi randula: For when the Emperour had bene at passing charges in kepyng a great host, for the reco uery of Siena from December last vnto Iune: the Pope would needes become stickler in that matter betwene the Emperour, the French kyng and Siena promising such conditions to all, as neither of the Princes should lose honour and yet Siena should haue had liberties. The Emperour good man yet agayne trustyng him who so spightfully had deceaued hym before dismissed hys hoste, which done Siena was left still in the French mens handes: who therby haue such oportunitie to fortifie it, as ye Emperor is not like by force to recouer it Piramus Secretary to y e Emperor told this tale to Syr Phillip Hobby & the Byshop of Westminster openly at y e table: The mery aunswer of Piramus of Julius Tertius:/ which Piramus is a Papist for his life: & beyng asked how he could excuse the Popes vnkyndnes agaynst his master ye Emperour: Hee aunswered smilyng Iulius tercius is a knaue but ye Pope is an honest man, which saying is common in this court. And although they wil vndersta nd both ye spight of y e pope, & ye shame of their master, yet are they content stil to speake of y e pope though he neuertheles still do ill to ye Emperour.
And thus to returne to my purpose how the Pope set the two Princes together, & shift his owne necke a while out of [Page/Sig: D2r] the halter, leauyng most vnfrendly the Emperour when he was farthest behynd hand: and how Octauio for feare of Gonzaga, and vnkyndnes of the Emperour fell with all hys famely to be French, I haue briefly passed ouer for the hast I haue to come to the matters of Germany.
THe Emperour beyng thus set vpon by the Turke and Fraunce with open warre, and troubled by the house of Fernesia with so soddeyne breaches, and most of all encombred with the feare of the sturres in Germany which secretly were then in workyng: the Prince of Salerne also declared hym selfe an open enemy.
This Prince in this court is much beloued for his ge ntlenes and openly praysed for his wisedome, & greatly lamented for his fortune, who before tyme hath done so good and faythfull seruice to the Emperour: that I haue heard some in this Court say, which loue the Emperour well and serue him in good place, that their master hath done the Prince so much wrong, as he could do no lesse then he dyd: who being so vniustly handled by his enemies, the Uiceroy of Naples, and so vnkyndly dealt with all by hys master y e Emperour, was driuen by necessitie to séeke an vnlawfull shift.
The dehandion of Don pietro de Toledo Viceroy of Naples:/ The Uiceroy Don Pietro de Toledo vncle to ye Duke of Alua, & father in law to ye duke of Florence vsed him selfe with much cruelty ouer ye people of Naples by exactions of money without measure, by Inquisition of mens doyngs without order, & not onely of mens doynges, but also of mens out ward lookyngs, & inward thinkynges, vsing the least suspicion for a sufficient witnes to spoyle & to kill whom soeuer he lysted. Men that had sutes vnto him, had as leue bene away with the losse of their right, as haue come to his presence to abyde his lokes & taunts: And (as I heard a wise gentleman of Italy say) he gaue audience in such tyme & place, as [Page/Sig: D2v] he may easlyer in this Court speake with Monsieur d'Arras then he could in Naples with the Uiceroyes Porter. And commonly he would not heare them whilest an hundred suters should come at once, and then the Porter let them in by one and by one euen as he fauoured not as the matter required, commaundyng them to be short or els they should come short in the next tyme. And so mens sutes were pulled from common law to priuate will, & were heard not in place open to Iustice but in priuate Parlors shit vp to all that came not in by fauour or money. And therfore iudgements were allotted not as law appointed, but as the Uiceroy listed. Caesars vndoing for drawing the common lawe into his owne howse./This fault (Cicero sayth) vndyd Caesar who drew the common law into his own house, & so in hauing other mens goods lost all mens hartes and not long after his owne lyfe: for euen those that dyd helpe him plucke down Pompey, dyd af ter kill him for pulling downe the lawes: So we see that Princes not in gatheryng much money, nor in bearing ouer great swinge but in keping of frendes & good lawes lyue most merely & raigne most surely. But such as gape alwayes for other mens goods commonly neuer enioy ye fruite of their owne: for they neuer cease to win by wrong till at length they leese by right goodes lyfe & all. And therfore it is notable yt Dion. in Plato writeth to Dionisius y e tyraunt, how Euripides in euery tragedy bringeth for some great vice one or other great Prince to ruine & yet not one doth complaine thus: Out out alas alas, I dye for lacke of goodes. But euery one singeth this song: [Page/Sig: D3r] Out out alas alas, I dye for lacke of frendes.
For a Prince that will take mens goods when he listeth without order shall want mens hartes when he needeth wtout pitie: but in hauyng their hartes he shall neuer lacke their goodes, as the good kyng Cirus sayd to the rich kyng Craesus. And to haue the peoples hartes the next way is to be gentle to euery one, iust to all and liberall to many and especially to such as either by excellency of wit or good will in true seruice do well deserue it. Also to set his chiefest ioy not in priuate pleasure like Sardanapalus, but in common wealth as we haue example of Titus Vespasianus: and to thinke his treasure greatest, not when his coffers be fullest as Craesus dyd, but when his subiectes be richest as Cyrus dyd & that through hys wisedome and care as all prayse worthy princes haue euer hetherto done. And what will the people render agayn to such a Prince? A small subsidy, with a great grudge? no, but their whole hartes to loue him: their whole goodes to ayde hym: theyr handes ready to defende hym, and theyr lyues as ready to dye for hym when soeuer he shall haue neede. A Prince that thus doth lyue and thus is loued at home may be enuyed with much prayse, and hated with smal hurte of any power abroad.
And therfore haue I heard wisemen discommend the gouernement in Fraunce in makyng theyr people almost slaues, and from thence a com mon saying of some in England, Syr Iohn Gates wish. that would haue the people neither witty nor wealthy when wit is the meare gift of GOD: So that to wish [Page/Sig: D3v] men lesse wit that haue it, is to count God scarse wise that gaue it. And wealth of the people as handure sayth: is the glory of a Prince, and su rety of hys raigne. But suspition in all gouerning breedeth such sayinges, when wrong doth beare such swynge, as ill conscience doth alwayes wish that men should lacke either wit to perceaue or habilitie to amende whatsoeuer is done amisse. AchitophelsBut God send such Achitophels better ende then their counsels doth deserue which would sene wise by other mens folly, and would be rich by other mens pouertie.
To returne to the Uiceroy of Naples the common opinion of those in this Court which haue priuate cause to say wel on him do speake it boldly and openly, that he was such a one as neuer could content his couetousnes with money, nor neuer satisfie his crueltie with bloud: And so by this foule meane many gentlemen in Naples haue lost some theyr liues but moe theyr liuynges, and almost all theyr libertie. foriensuti arr theves betwene Rome and Naples./ And there be at this day as men say here that know it a good sort of thousandes Neapolitanes, named Foriensuti, who beyng spoyled at home by violence, robbe other abroad for neede, which comber so the passage betwixt Rome and Naples, as no man departeth commonly from Rome without company which commeth to Naples without robbyng.
The whole body of the kyngdome of Naples was so distempered inwardly with this misorder, with a litle outward occasion it would easely haue burst forth into a foule sore. A lesse matter [Page/Sig: D4r] then the rauishyng of Lucrece, A meaner ayde then the helpe of Brutus, was thought sufficient to haue stirred vp this inward grudge to open reuenge. But see how God prouided for the Emperour and the quyet of that kingdome: For God in takyng away one Spanyard hath made Naples now more strong, then if the Emperour had set xx. thousand of the best in Spayne there: for euen this last Lent. 1553. the death of Don pietro di Toledo, viceroy of Naples 1553 Don Pietro di Toledo dyed at Florence by whose goyng away mens hartes in Naples be so come agayne to the Emperour, as he shall now haue lesse neede either to care for the fyne fetches of Fraunce, or to feare the great power of the Turke. A gentleman of this Court a true seruaunt to the Emperour sayd merely in a com pany where I was, that his master the Empe rour had won more in Naples by the death of the Uiceroy, then he had lost in Lorraigne by the for gyng of Metz.
But to my purpose not many yeares agoe diuers in Naples made their complaint to the Prince of Salerne of their griefes, who was thought would be most willyng for his good nature, and best able for his authoritie to seeke some remedie for them by way of intercession to the Emperour.
The Prince beyng here at Bruxels humbly besought hys Maiestie to pitie the miserie of hys poore subiectes: who by this sute gat of the Emperour for hys cliantes, wordes without hope: and of the Uiceroy for him selfe hatred without ende. The Prince yet alwayes bare hym selfe so wisely, that he could not without some sturre [Page/Sig: D4v] be thrust downe openly: and ridyng on his iourney he was once shot with a dagge secretly.
Thus he seyng no ende of displeasure in the Uiceroy no hope of remedy in the Emperour, when he saw the Turke on the Sea, the French kyng in the field, Duke Maurice and the Marches vp, and a good part of Italy either risen, or ready to rise, thinkyng the tyme come of theyr most hope for helpe by the Princes, and of least feare of punishment by the Emperour, came forth to play his part also amongest the rest: who when flying first to the French kyng and after by hys counsell as it is sayd to the Turke, is compelled to venture vppon many hard fortunes. And what succes he shall haue either of helpe in Fraunce or comfort of the Turke, or mercy of the Emperour I can not yet write. The Ile of Cio./ But this last winter he hath lyen in the Ile of Cio, and now I heare say this sommer he is on the Sea with 63. Gallyes of the Turkes at his commaundement, what enter price he will make, or what successe he shall haue when we shall heare of the matter, I trust I shal either by some priuate letter from hence or by present talke at home fully satisfie you therin.
Marches Albertes booke and the contents therof. ALbert Marches of Bradenburge in the begyn nyng of his sturre .1552. wrote a booke and set it Print wherin he declared the causes of hys fallyng from the Emperour wittely alledgyng common misery as a iust pretence of hys priuate enterprise makyng other mens hurtes, his remedy [Page/Sig: E1r] to heale his own sores and common wronges hys way to reuenge priuate displeasures: shewyng liberty to be last, and Religion to be defaced, in all Germany, lamentyng the long captiuitie of the two great Princes: and all the dispossessyng of hys father in law Duke Otto Henrick: sore enueyng against the pride of the Spanyardes and the authoritie of straungers, which had now in their handes the seale of the Impiere,Sore and iust com playntes. and in theyr swynge the doyng of all thynges, and at their commaundement all such mens voyces as were to be called the Imperiall Dietes: compellyng the Ger manes in their owne countrey to vse straunge toungs for their priuate sutes, wherin they could say nothyng at all, or nothyng to the purpose: vsing Camera Imperialis at Spires for a common key to open all mens coffers when they listed and these were the chiefest points in Marches booke.
The Marches also sore enueyed agaynst Luice de Auila for writyng, The booke of Luice de Auila. and agaynst the Emperour for suffring such a booke as Luice de Auila wrote: wherein the honor of Germany and the Princes therof & by name Marches Albert, who was in ye first warres on the Emperours side, was so defamed to all the world: yea the Marches was so throughly chafed with this boke, y t when I was in the Emperours court he offred ye combat with Luice de Auila, which the Emperour for good wil and wise respectes would in no case admit.
Not onely the Marches but also the Princes at the Diet of Passan this last yeare made a common complaint of this booke. I knew also the [Page/Sig: E1v] good old Prince Fredericke Palsgraue of ye Rhene in September last when the Emperour lay at Landaw beside Spires, goyng with his great army to Metz, complayned to the Emperour hym selfe and to his counsell of a certaine spightfull place in that booke against him: The good prince told me this tale him selfe at hys house in Heldibirge when I caried vnto him kyng Edwardes let ters, the Lord Ambassadour him selfe beyng sicke at Spires.
The duke of Bauiere vnkyndly handled.And wise men say that the Duke of Bauiere, also is euill contented for that which is written in that booke agaynst his father when he deserued of the Imperials, to haue bene rewarded rather with prayse and thankes then with any vnkynde note of blame and dishonour: of whom the Em perour in his warres agaynst the Lansgraue and the Duke of Saxonie receiued such kindnes, as no Prince in Germany for all respectes in yt case was able to affourde hym: as first he had his whole countrey of Bauiere for a sure footyng place, to begyn the warre in: and had also both men and vittaile of hym what he would, and at length should haue had that countrey his onely refuge, if that in warre he had come to any vnderdele as he was like enough to haue done. But it was Gods secret will and pleasure to haue the matter then go as it did: duke Albert of Bavaria And for that cause men say Duke Albert of Bauiere that now is that hath maryed the Emperours niece, was more straunge this last yeare to the Emperour, when he was driuen to that extremitie to flye away on the night from [Page/Sig: E2r] Inspurge and was more familiar with duke Mau rice, and more frendly to the Princes confederate then els peraduenture he would haue done.
And here a writer may learne, of Princes affaires a good lesson to beware of parcialitie either in flattery, or spight: For although thereby a man may please his owne Prince presently yet he may perchaunce as much hurt hym in the end as Luis de Auila dyd hurt y e Emperour his master in writyng of this booke. In deede this booke was not ye chiefest cause of this sturre in Germany: but sure I am that many Princes in Germany were sore agreeued wt it, as the Emperour wanted both theyr hartes & their handes when he stode in most nede of frendes: Iust reprehension of all vices as folie, vniust dealyng, cowardice, and vicious liuyng, must be frely and franckly vsed, yet so with that moderate discression as no purposed malice or bent hatred, may seeme to be the breeder of any false reproch which humor of writyng followeth so full, in Paulus Iouius bookes, and that by that iudgement of his owne frendes, as I haue heard wise and well learned men say: A censure of Paulus Jovius his history./ that his whole study and purpose is spent on these pointes, to deface the Emperour, to flatter Fraunce, to spite England, to belye Germany, to prayse the Turke, to keepe vp the Pope, to pull downe Christ and Christes Religion, as much as lyeth in him. But to my purpose agayne.
The matters before of me briefly rehearsed, were at large declared in Marches Albertes booke: yet that you may know what secret wor kyng [Page/Sig: E2v] went before this playne writyng and open doyng. And because the Marches part hath bene so notable in all this pastime, I will by more particular circumstaunces lead you to this generall complaintes.
five Marquesses of Brandenburge There be at this day fiue Marchesses of Bradenburge: Ioachimus Elector, Ioha nnes his brother who for Ciuile seruice is Imperiall with might and mayne, & yet in Religion a Christian Prince with hart toung & honesty of lyfe: Doctour Christopher Monte, both a learned and wise man, our kynges Maiestie seruaunt and his Agent in the affaires of Germany hath told me diuers tymes, that this Marches Iohn and the Duke of Swaburg, be two of the worthiest Princes in all the Empier either in considering wisely, or executing courageously any great affaire. The thyrd is Marches George who dwelleth in Franconia not farre from Noremberg. The fourth Marches Albert the elder the mighty Duke of Prusia hable for his power to cope with any Prince, Duke of Prusia. and xv. yeares together he dyd stoutly withstand in con tinuall warre the strength of the kyng of Pole. He hath so fully banished Papistry and so surely established the doctrine of the Gospell in Prusia, as no where hetherto in Germany is more diligently done, he loueth learnyng and honoreth learned men, Marques Albert the Duke of Prusia founded a new vniversitie in Prusia called Mons Regius Anno 1544./ and therfore. an .1544. he founded a new Uniuersitie in Prusia called Mons Regius bryngyng thether with plentyfull thynges excellent learned men in all tounges and sciences. He is vncle to this notable Marches Albert, and lackyng [Page/Sig: E3r] children hath made him his heyre, and hath already inuestured hym in the Dukedome of Prusia.
The fift is Marches Albert of whom I purpose to write on: whose father was Cassimirus descended from the kynges of Pole, and for his noblenes agaynst the Turke called Achilles Germanicus Cassimirus: Achilles germanicus: and therfore might very well engender such a hoate Pirrhus. Marches Albert in hys young yeares as I haue heard wise men say, was rude in hys maners, nor did not shew any token of towardnes likely to attempt any such affaires as in deede he hath done. lacke of learning and good bringing vpp, is a great and common fault in great princes of germany It might be either for the lacke of learnyng and good bringyng vp (a great and common fault in great Princes of Germany) or els for his bashfull nature in youth, which propertie Xenophon wittely fayned to be in Cyrus at like yeares iudgyng bashfulnes in youth to be a great token of vertue in age. Bashfulnes in youthe a great token of vertue in age:/ Xenoph. 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉 .
The dehandion of Marques Albert Marches Albert is now at this day about xxxj. yeares old: of a good stature, neither very high, nor very low, thicke without grosenes: rather wel boned for strength, then ouerloded with flesh: his face fayre, bewtifull, brode, sterne, and manly: somewhat resemblyng my Lord Marches of Northt. when he was of the same yeares, his eyes great and rowlyng, makyng his counte nance cherefull when he talketh: and yet when he geueth eare to other he kepeth both a sadde looke without signe of suspicion, and also a well set eye without token of malice: And this behauiour I marked well in hym when I dyned in his com pany [Page/Sig: E3v] at the siege of Metz, in the County Iohn of Nassaus tent, his voyce is great and his wordes not many, more ready to here other then to talke him selfe. And when he talketh he so frameth hys toung to agree with hart, as speakyng and meanyng seemeth to be alwayes at one in hym, and herein he may be well called the sonne of Achilles whom Homer wittely doth fayne to haue such a free open nature A free open nature in Achilles/: whose saying in Geeke is excel lent, but beyng turned in the wrong side into English, it shall lesse delight you yet thus much it signifieth: Who either in earnest or in sport, doth frame hym selfe after such sort: This thyng to thincke and that to tell, my hart abhorreth as gate to hell.
Homer, meanyng hereby that a Prince of noble courage should haue his hart, his looke, hys toung, and his handes so alwayes agreeyng together in thinkyng, pretendyng, and speakyng, and doyng, as no one of these foure should at any tyme be at iarre with an other, which agreeyng together in their right tune, do make a pleasaunt melody in all mens eares both sweetest and loudest, called in English (honor) and most fitly in Greeke 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉 , the price and prayse of vertue.
And though the Marches be free to say what he thinketh, yet he is both secret in purposyng & close in workyng what soeuer hee goeth about. Now very skillfull to do harme to others, and as ware to keepe hurte from hym selfe, yet first bet [Page/Sig: E4r] vnto it with his own rod: for in y e former warres of Germany being on ye Emperours side he fell into the handes of Duke Iohn Fridericke of Saxony, which chaunce he is charged sore withall by Luice de Auila and that with so spightfull and open a mouth, as moued the Marches to offer hym the combat as I sayd before. He is now most courageous in hardest aduentures, most cherefull in present ieoperdy, and most paynefull in greatest labours: hauyng no souldier vnder him, that can better away with heate and cold or longer suffer hunger and thrist then he him selfe. The marques better knowne by his fearce doinges, then by his gaye going His apparell is souldier like, better knowen by his fearce doynges then by his gay goyng: His souldiours feare him for his stoutnes, and loue him for his li beralitie: which winneth to him authoritie fit for a stout Captaine, and worketh in them obedience due to good souldiours.
This last yeare a litle before hys agreement wt the Emperour hys souldiours for lacke of money & meate fell to mutenyng and then fell the Marches fastest to hangyng, not hidyng him selfe for feare, but comming abroad with courage, did pro test that neither the proudest should make misor der without punishment nor yet the prodest should lacke as long as either he had peny in hys purse or loafe of bread in his tent. And after this sort of outward behauiour and inward condition in Marches Albert, as I haue marked his person my selfe and as I haue learned hys doynges by such as by experience knew them well & for theyr honesty would reporte them right and now how [Page/Sig: E4v] he fell from the Emperour I wil as briefly declare.
The Marches serued the Emperour as I said before in the former warres in Germany agaynst the Lansgraue and the Duke of Saxony, where he lost some honour and spent much money. The Emperour shortly after came downe hether to Bruxels hauyng the Marches in his company, who lookyng for a great recompence of hys costes, and receiuyng litle, and seyng his honor not one ly defaced in the field presently when he was taken prisoner, but also defamed for euer by writing confirmed by the Emperours priuiledge to grow abroad in the world began to take the matter so vnkindly, that he left comming to the Court, and kept his owne house: rising euery day very early: and writing all the forenoone very diligently yet what he did no man knew: so that his absence breed a talke in the Court, and his soddein and secret study wrought a wonderfull gelousy of his doynges in the Emperours head: for he knew the Marches to haue courage enough to atte mpt matters ouer great: and therfore sent Monsieur Grand uill: vnto the Marches house as of hym selfe to grope out his doynges, who declared vnto the Marches ye Emperours great goodwil towards hym, shewyng that his Maiestie was purposed to make him a great personage, & to begyn withall had in mynde to geue hym a goodly and profitable office in all his Mintes.
The Marches aunswered roundly and plainly to the first, that the Emperour could not make him greater then he was, beyng Marches of Bradenburge: post. f. 18.a [Page/Sig: F1r] And as for ye office in the Minte, he said smiling, he vsed not oft to tell his owne money, & therefore he thought not to make the accompt of o thers & so made nothing of the Emperours offer: onely hee desired Grandeuill that the Emperour would geue him leaue to go home to his owne, which he obtained: And at his departure ye Em perour gaue him a patent of 4000. crownes by y e yeare: But ye Marches was not well foure miles out of Bruxels, when he sent the patent by post to y e Emperour agayne saying: his Maiestie might better bestow it on some that had more neede of it. The marques as lothe to receyve of his frends by benevolence as he is readie to take from his enemyes by violence And in deede the Marches is as loth to receiue of his frendes by beneuolence, as he is ready to take from hys enemies by violence which commeth somewhat of to stout a courage.
Thus the Marches came home not best contented as it may well appeare: nor saw not the Emperour after till he met hym at the siege of Metz. Casmirus his father and the Marches hym selfe were great spenders and deepe detters: the one for his stoutnes in warre, the other for his lustines in youth. And therefore became quicke borrowers & slow payers, which thyng brought the Marches into such trouble as hee had with the City of Noremberge with his neighbours the Bishop of Herbipolis and with his Godfather the Byshop of Pamberge.
The Marches was no sooner come home, but these Byshops spying their tyme, when he had left the Emperours Court, and had quite lost or much lessened his frendship there, began to trouble [Page/Sig: F1v] him with new suites for old debtes in Camera Im periali, at Spires, where the Marches because hee lacked either fauour in the Court, or experience in young yeares, or good matter on his side, was alwayes wrong to the worst, and to stuffe vp his stomach with more matter of vnkindnes against the Emperour, it is sayd that letters from the greatest in the Emperours Court were neuer lackyng at Spires to helpe forward processe agaynst the Marches.
Shortly after this tyme began the siege of Madenburg where Duke Maurice by the Emperour was appoynted generall. The Marches either weery of leesyng at home by sutes, or desirous to winne abroad by warre, or els purposing to prac tise some way to reuenge his displeasures made him ready to serue against Madenburg with 500. horse. And in the begynnyng of the spryng of the yeare .1551. he set forward and in his way went to visite Ernestus his cosin Duke of Saxony bro ther to Iohn Fridericke the prisoner with the Em perour Ernestus duke of Saxony, brother to Jhon frederick the emperours prisoner. The selfe same time Lazarus Swendy was sent from the Emperour as Commissary to duke Ernestus with earnest commaundement that the Duke and all his, should receiue the doctrine of the Interim. And that I may accomplish my pur pose, which is to paynt out as cruelly as I can, by writyng, the very Image of such persons as haue played any not able part in these affaires: and so you beyng absent shall with some more pleasure read their doynges. This Lazarus Swendy is a tall and a comely personage, The dehandion of Lazarus Swendy. and beyng [Page/Sig: F2r] brought vp in learnyng vnder Oecolampadius at Basile makyng (as it was told me by an honest man that was throughly acquainted with hym there) more accompt of his tall stature, then of any bewty of the mynde, began to be wery of learnyng, and became desirous to beare some bragge in the world ▪ and so made a souldiour, mard a scholer, & because he would make a lusty chaunge from the feare of God and knowledge of Christs doctrine, he fell to be a peruerse and bloody Papist: euer at hand in any cruell execution agaynst the poore Protestantes as commonly all such do which so wittingly shake of Christ, and his Gospell: such a Commissary you may be sure would cruelly enough execute his office.
Duke Ernestus told the Commissary that he his landes and lyfe were at his Maiesties commaundement, his Maiestie knew how quietly he bare him selfe alwayes, & therfore his trust was as he willingly serued the Emperour with true obedience: so he might as freely serue God with right conscience: for he would rather leaue hys landes and goodes and all to the Emperour, and go beg with his wife & children, then they would forsake the way of the Gospell which God hath commaunded them to follow.
And marke how euidently God dyd declare both how much such a Co mmission sent out abroad in Germany agaynst him and hys word dyd displease him: and also how much the prayers and sighyng hartes of iust men do in tyme preuayle with hym: for as a man of much honesty & great [Page/Sig: F2v] knowledge in all the matters of Germany did tell me, assoone as this Commission was once abroad, the practises in Germany began to styrre, yet not so openly as the Emperour might haue iust cause to withstand them, nor so couertly but he had oc casion enough to mistrust them: and thereby he both lacked helpe for open remedy, and wanted no displeasure for inward grief.
Duke Ernestus, Marches Albert, and Lazarus Swendy sate at supper togethers: & as they were talkyng of ye Interim, the Marches soddenly brast out into a fury saying: what deuill? will ye Emperour neuer leaue striuyng with God in defacyng true Religion and tossyng the world in debarryng all mens liberties? addyng, that he was a Prince vnkynd to euery man, and kept touch with no man, that could forget all mens merites, & would deceiue whom soeuer he promised.
The Duke liked not this hoate talke in hys house and at his table, but sayd: Cosin you speake but merely, and not as you thincke, adding much the prayse of the Emperours gentlenes shewed to many, and of his promise kept withall. Well (quoth the Marches) if he had bene either kynde where men haue deserued or would haue performed that hee promised: neither should I at this tyme accuse hym, nor you haue sit here in this place to defende hym, for he promised to geue me this house with all the landes that thereto belon geth: but ye be affrayd Cosin (quoth y e Marches) lest this talke be to loud, and so heard to farre of: when in deede if the Commissarie here, be so honest [Page/Sig: F3r] a man as I take him, and so true to his ma ster as he should be, he will not fayle to say what he hath heard, and on the same condition Commis sary I bryng thee good lucke, and drancke of vn to hym a great glasse of wine. Lazarus Swendyes talke then sounded gently and quietly, for he was sore affrayed of the Marches. But he was no soner at home with the Emperour, but word was sent straight to Duke Maurice that the Marches who was as then come to Madenburg if he would needes serue there, should serue without wages.
Ye may be sure the Marches was chafed a new with this newes who already had lost a great sort of hys men and now must leese hys whole labour thether, and all his wages there, besides the losse of hys honour in takyng such shame of hys enemies, & receiuyng such vnkyndnes of the Emperour.
The Marches was not so greeued but Duke Maurice was as well contented with this commaundement: for euen then was Duke Maurice Secretary practisyng by Baron Hadeckes aduise with the French kyng for the sturre which dyd follow: and therfore was glad when he saw the Marches might be made hys so easely whiche came very soone to passe: so that the Marches for the same purpose in the ende of the same yeare went into Fraunce secretly, and was there with Shertly as a common Launce Knight, and named hymselfe Captaine Paul, lest the Emperour spials should get out his doynges: where by the aduise of Shertly hee practised with the French kyng for [Page/Sig: F3v] the warres which followed after. This matter was told vnto me by Iohn Mecardus one of the chief Preachers in Augusta, who beyng banished the Empiere, when and how ye shall heare after was fayne to flye, and was with Shertly the same yeare in Fraunce.
The Marches came out of Fraunce in the begynnyng of the yeare .1552. and out of hand gathered vp men, but his purpose was not knowne, yet the Emperour mistrusted the matter, beyng at Insburg, sent Doct. Hasius one of hys counsell, to know what cause he had to make such sturre. Doctor Hasius This Doct. Hasius was once an earnest protestant, and wrote a booke on that side, & was one of the Palsgraues priuy counsell: But for hope to clime higher, he was very ready to be entised by y e Emperour to forsake first his master & then God: By whom the Emperour knew much of all ye Princes Protestants purposes, for he was commonly one whom they had vsed in all their Dietes and priuate practises: which thing caused the Emperour to seeke to haue hym: that by his head he might the easelyer ouerthrow the Protestantes, & with them God and hys word in all Germany.
This man is very lyke M. Parrie her graces cofferer in head, face, legges and bellye. What aunswere Hasius had I can not tell, but sure I am the Marches then both wrote his booke of com playntes agaynst the Emperour, and set it out in Printe. And also came forward with banner displayed, and tooke Dillyng vpon Danuby the Cardinall of Augustus towne, which Cardinall with [Page/Sig: F4r] a few Priestes fled in post to the Emperour at Inspurg, where he found so cold cheare, and so litle comfort, that forthwith in all hast, he posted to Rome.
Horsemen and footemen in great companies still gathered to the Marches: and in the ende of March he marched forward to Augusta, where he, Duke Maurice, the young Lansgraue, the duke of Mechelburg, George, and Albert, with William Duke of Brunswycke, and other Princes confederate met together and besieged that Citie, Where I will leaue the Marches till I haue brought Duke Maurice and hys doinges to the same time, and to the same place.
NOt many yeares agoe whole Saxony was chiefly vnder two Princes Whole Saxony Vnder two princes: the one duke Iohn Fredericke borne Elector, who yet liueth, defender of Luther, a noble setter out, and as true a follower of Christ and his Gospell: The other hys kynsman Duke George who is dead, Knight of the order of the Golden Fleece, a great man of the Emperour, a mayntainer of Cocleus, and a notable piller of Papistry.
Duke Iohn Fredericke is now 50. yeares of age, Iohn Fredericke Duke of Saxon. so byg of personage as a very strong horse is scarse able to beare hym & yet is he a great deale bygger in all kynde of vertues, in wisedome, iu stice, liberalitie, stoutnes, temperancy in hym self, and humanitie towardes others, in all affaires, and either fortunes vsing a singular trouth and [Page/Sig: F4v] stedfastnes: so that Luice de Auila, and the Secretary of Ferrare who wrote the story of the first warres in Germany, and professe to be his ernest enemies both for matters of state and also of Religion, were so compelled by his worthynes to say the truth as though theyr onely purpose had bene to write his prayse. He was fiue yeares prisoner in this Court, where he wan such loue of all men, as the Spanyardes now say: they would as gladly fight to set hym vp agayne as euer they dyd to pull hym downe: For they see that he is wise in all his doynges, iust in all hys dealynges, lowly to the meanest, princely with the biggest, and excellyng gentle to all, whom no aduersitie could euer moue, nor pollicy at any tyme entice to shrincke from God and his word. And here I must needes commend the Secretary of Ferrare, who beyng a Papist, and writyng the history of the late warres in Germany, doth not kepe backe a goodly testimony of Duke Frederickes constancy toward God and hys Religion.
When the Emperour had taken the Duke prisoner he came shortly after before the Citie of Witemberg: and beyng aduised by some bloudy counsellours that Duke Frederickes death should, by the terrour of it turne all the Protestantes from theyr Religion, caused a write to be made for the Duke to be executed the next mornyng vppon a solemne scaffold in the sight of his wife children, and the whole Citie of Wittemberg.
This write signed with the Emperours own hand was sent ouer night to the Duke, who when Verte ad fol. 22.a [Page/Sig: G1r] the write came vnto hym was in hys tent play ing at Chesse with his Cosin and fellow prisoner the Lansgraue of Lithenberg The Lansgraue of Lithenberg, and readyng it adui sedly ouer layd it downe quietly beside and made no countenance at all at y e matter, but sayd Cosin take good heede to your game, and returnyng to his play as quietly as though he had receiued some priuate letter of no great importance dyd geue the Lansgraue a trim mate.
The Emperour (I doubt not) chiefly moued by God: secondly of his great wisedome and naturall clemency, when he vnderstode his meruei lous constancie chaunged his purpose and reuo ked the write, and euer after gaue him more ho nour, and shewed him more humanitie then any Prince that euer I haue read of haue hetherto done to his prisoner.
He is also such a louer of learnyng as his Librarie furnished with bookes of all tounges and sciences, passeth all other Libraries which are yet gathered in Christendome: For my frend Ieronimus Wolfius who translated Demosthenes out of Greeke into Latine, who had sene the French kings Library at Augusta, The french kings Library at Augusta hath told me that though in six monethes he was not able onely to write out the titles of the bookes in the Fuggers Library, yet was it not so byg as Duke Frederickes was which he saw in Saxony. The fuggers I thinke he vnderstan deth no straunge toung saue somewhat the Latin and a litle the French: And yet it is merueilous that my frend Iohannes Sturmius doth report by writyng, what he heard Phillip Melancthon at a [Page/Sig: G1v] tyme say of this noble Duke: that he thought the Duke did priuately read & write more euery day then did both he and D. Aurifaber which two were counted in all mens iudgementes to be the greatest readers and writers in all the Uniuersitie of Wittemberg.
And as hee doth thus read with such diligence, euen so he can report with such a memory what soeuer he doth read, and namely histories, as at his table on euery new occasion he is accustomed to recite some new story which hee doth with such pleasure and vtterance as men be content to leaue their meat to heare him talke: and yet hee hym selfe is not disdaynfull to heare the meanest nor will ouerwhart any mans reason. He talketh without tauntyng, and is mery with out scoffyng, deludyng no man for sport, nor nip pyng no man for spight.
Two kindes of men as his Preachers did tell me at Vilacho he will neuer long suffer to be in his house: the one a common mocker, who for his pride thincketh so wel of his owne wit as his most delight is to make other men fooles, and where God of his prouidence hath geuen small wit he for his sport wil make it none, and rather then he should leese his pleasure, he would an other should leese his wit: as I heare say was once done in England, and that by the sufferaunce of such as I am sorry for the good wil I beare them to heare such a report: the other a priuy whisperer a pickthancke a tale teller medling so with other mens matters, as he findeth no leysure to looke to his owne: one [Page/Sig: G2r] such in a great house is able to turne and tosse the quietnes of all. Such two kinde of men sayth the Duke besides the present troubling of others ne uer or seldome come to good end them selues. He loueth not also bold and thicke skinned faces, wherein the meanyng of the hart doth neuer ap peare. Nor such hid talke as lyeth in wayte for o ther mens wittes. But would, yt wordes should be so framed with the toung, as they be alwayes ment in the hart.
And therfore the Duke him selfe thincketh nothyng which he dare not speake,A noble na ture. nor speaketh nothyng whiche hee will not do. Yet hauyng thoughtes grounded vppon wisedome, his talke is alwayes so accompanied with discression and his deedes so attende vppon true dealyng, as he neither biteth with wordes, nor wringeth with deedes, Impudencye folowing the fault; is the farthest poynt in ill doing Impudentiam sequitur omnis turpitudo/ zenophon except impudency follow the fault, which Xenophon wittely calleth the farthest point in al doyng, Duke fredericks Aunswerr to a Spaniard/ and then he vseth to speake home as he did to a Spanyard this last yeare at Villacho, who beyng of the Dukes garde, when he was prisoner, and now preasyng to sit at his table when he was at libertie, Because many nobles of y e Court came that day to dine with the duke, The gentle man Husher gently desired the Spanyard to spare his rowme for that day for a great personage: But hee countenancyng a braue Spanish bragge, sayd, Seignor ye know me well enough, and so sat him downe.
The Duke heard him, and preuentyng hys mans aunswere sayd: In deede you be to well Ingratitudinem; impudentia; impudentiam Vero seguitur omnis turpit udo. [Page/Sig: G2v] knowen, by the same token the last tyme you were here you tooke a gobblet away with you, & ther fore when you haue dyned you may go without farewell, and haue leaue to come agayne when ye be sent for. In the meane while an honest man may occupy your place. But in remembryng so good a Prince I haue gone to farre from my matter: And yet the remembraunce of him is neuer out of place, whose worthynes is neuer to be forgotten.
Duke George of Saxony a litle before he dyed hauyng no child did dishinherite Duke Henry his brother by his last wil because he was a Protestant, and gaue away his whole inheritaunce to Ferdinando kyng of Romaines.
But Duke Iohn Fredericke by force of armes set and kept his Cosin Duke Henry in his right: And he dying soone after left behynd hym two sonnes Duke Maurice and Duke Augustus, who likewise in their youth were defended in theyr right by the wisedome and force of Duke Iohn Fredericke. Duke Maurice was brought vp in Duke Iohn Frederickes house as if hee had bene hys owne sonne and maryed the Lansgraues daughter.
After it came to passe that the Emperour attempted to establish Papistry in Germany with the sword, agaynst which purpose the Lansgraue and duke Iohn Fredericke armed them selues not to resist the Emperour as the Papistes say, but to kepe Gods Religion vp, if any by violence would pull it downe, refusing neuer, but requiryng al wayes [Page/Sig: G3r] to referre them and theyr doctrine to a lawfull and free generall Councell where truth in Religion might be fully tryed in the hearyng of euen and 〈 in non-Latin alphabet 〉 , wordes alwayes vsed in Thucidides in decidyng co mmon con trouersies.equall iudges and that by the touch stone of Gods Canonicall handures.
Duke Maurice in the begynnyng of his warre was suspected neither of the Lansgraue nor of Duke Fredericke beyng sonne in law to the one and nighe kinsman to the other and agreeyng in Religion with both. Yea he was not onely not sus pected. But as I heard skilful men say he was ready with his counsell & promised his ayde to helpe forward ye enterprice, or els Hance Fredericke beyng a Prince of such wisedome would not haue left at home behind hym an enemy of such a force.
Francisco Duke Maurice Agent with the Em perour was asked, I beyng by at Augusta, how he could excuse his masters vnkindnes towards Iohn Fredericke who had bene such a father vnto him. He graunted that Duke Fredericke had bene A great frend vnto him, and might haue beene a greater if he had would, and then lesse strife had followed then did. And troth it is (sayd he) as Duke Fredericke kept my master in his right, so afterward he put him from part of his right, when in his yong yeares hee chopped and chaunged landes with him when he listed: which thing my master com ming to mans state much misliked, and oft com playnyng could neuer obtayne remedy there in. Kyndnes should rather haue kyndly encrea sed, then so vnkyndly haue decayed specially when the one was trusted withall, and the other of [Page/Sig: G3v] such yeares, as he had neither wit to perceiue nor power to amend if any iniurie were offred vnto hym. Troth also it is that my master was brought vp in Duke Frederickes house: but he hath more cause to complaine on them that brought him thether, then to thanke such as brought him vp there, where he had alwayes plentie of drinke and as much scant of good teachyng to come to such vertue and learnyng as dyd belong to a Prince of his state.
Now whether this talke was altogether true, or, an ill excuse was made to couer a foule fact I can not tell: but sure I am Francisco sayd thus. I haue heard wise men say that it is not lyke, that for such a priuate strife Duke Maurice would haue so forsaken not onely his frend and kinsman, but also his father in law or would for the losse a litle, or rather for the chau nge of a peece haue so hassarded his whole estate, which was once in the first warre all gone saue Lypsia, and one other towne, beside the losse of loue in whole Germany and his good name amongest all Protestantes, in the middest of whom all hys liuinges do lye.
Why Duke Maurice left hys dearest frendes and fell in with the Emperour. Ambition. Well surely there was some great cause that could sturre vp so great a strife, and that was as wise men and wel willyng on Duke Maurice side in myne opinion haue truly iudged, the foule vice of ambition.
O Lord how many worthy men hath this one vice beareft from good common weales, which for all other respectes were most vnworthy [Page/Sig: G4r] of that end they came vnto. My hart weepes for those noble men of England, whose valiantnes in warre, whose wisedome in peace this Realme shal want and wayle and wish and wish for in tyme to come, which of late by this onely vice haue bene taken from vs. Examples, lesse for our grief and as fit for this purpose be plenty e nough in other states.
Ouer many experiences do teach vs, though a Prince be wise stout liberall gentle mercyfull and excellently learned, though he deserue all the prayse, that vertue nature and fortune can affourd him, yea that wit it selfe can wish for as we read that noble Iulius Caesar had, and that by the testimony of those that loued him not, neuertheles if these two foule verses of Euripides.Do right alway and wrong refraine. Except onely for rule and raigne.
If these verses I say do not onely sound well in his eare, but sincke deepe also in his hart, surely there is neither kindred, frendship, law, othe, obedience, countrey, God, nor his owne life, but he will hassard to leese all rather then to pursue this foule vice: For Polynices, for whom this verse was first made in Greeke, did fill not onely his owne countrey full of dead carcasses, but also whole Greece full of weepyng widdowes. And Caesar for whom the same verse was turned into Latin did not onely turne vpside down the goodliest common wealth that euer GOD suffred to stand vpon the earth: but also lossed the whole [Page/Sig: G4v] world with battayle and slaughter euen almost from the sunne setting vnto the sunne rising. And did not stop to bryng souldiours to do mischief further then any man now dare iourney by land either for pleasure or profite.
But see the fruite and end which this vngodly great growing bringeth men vnto: Both these Princes were slaine the one by his brother the other by his owne sonne, of whom in life, nature & benefites would they should haue taken most comfort of. The daungerous state of highe climers./ But men that loue to clime to hye haue alwayes least feare, and therefore by reason fall most soddenly and also fardest downe: yea the very bowghes that helped hym vp will now whip him in fallyng downe: For who so in cli myng trusteth when he is goyng vp any bough at all ouer much, though hee seeme to tread neuer so surely vppon it yet if he once begyn to slyp the same selfe bough is reddiest to beat him that seemed before surest to beare him. Examples hereof be seen dayly and forgotten hereby.
An other mischief chaunceth commonly to these high climers: that they will heare no man so gladly as such which are euer hartenyng them to clime still. If wise and good men durst speake more freely then they do: great men should do both others and them selues lesse harme then they are wont to do. He hateth him selfe and hasteth his owne hurt that is content to heare none so gladly as either a foole or a flatterer. A wonderfull follie in a great man him selfe and some peace of miserie in a whole common wealth, where [Page/Sig: H1r] fooles chiefly, and flatterers may speake freely what they will and wise men and good men shal commonly be shent, if they speake what they should.
And how commeth this to passe? it is the very plague of God for great mens sinnes, and the plaine high way to their iust punishment. And when God suffreth them so willingly to graunt freedome to follie and so gladly to geue hearyng to flattery: But see when the great man is gone and hath playd his part, fooles and flatterers be stil vpon the stage. Such liue in all worldes, such laugh in all miseries: Daui. Getae./ such Daui and Getae, haue alwayes the longest partes: and go out who shal they tary in place still. Mitio./ I know also many a good mitio, which haue played long partes whom I pray God kepe long still vpon the stage. And I trust no man will be miscontent with my generall saying except conscience do pricke him of his owne priuate ill doyng.
There be common wealthes where freedome in speakyng truth hath kept great men from boldnes in doyng ill: for free and frendly aduise is the trimmest glasse that any great man can vse to spye his owne fault in: which taken away they runne commonly so farre in foule doyng, as some neuer stay till they passe all remedy saue onely to late repentaunce. And as I would haue no flattery but wish for freedome: So in no wise do I commend ouermuch boldnes, or any kind of ray ling. But that libertie in speakyng should be so mingled with good will and discretion, as no [Page/Sig: H1v] great person should be vnhonorably spoken vpon, or any meane man touched out of order either for sport or spite: as some vnquiet heades neuer con tented with any state are euer procuryng either secretly with raylyng billes, or openly with tauntyng songes, or els some scoffing common play.
A dehandion of Discoursers of State matters. An other kynd of to bold talkers surpasse all these selly rumors, who are called, and so will be, common discoursers of all Princes affaires. These make a great accompt of them selues and will be commonly formost in any prease, and lustly with out blushing shoulder backe others: These will seeme to see further needes, in any secret affayre then the best and wisest counsellor a Prince hath. These be the open flatterers and priuy mislikers of all good counsellors doynges. And one com mon note, the most part of this brotherhode of discoursers commonly cary with them where they be bold to speake: to like better Tullies Offices, then S. Paules Epistles: and a tale in Bocace, then a story of the Bible.
And therfore for any Religion earnest setters forth of present tyme: with consciences confirmed with Machiauelles doctrine to thincke say and do whatsoeuer may serue best for profite or pleasure. Whether flatterers or raylers be worst But as concernyng flatterers and raylers to say mine opinion whether I like worse, surely as I haue read few men to haue bene hurt with bitter poysons: so haue I heard of as few great men to haue bene greatly harmed with sharpe talke: but are so ware therin, that commonly they wil com plaine of theyr hurt before they feele harme. And [Page/Sig: H2r] flattery agayne is so sweete, that it pleaseth best, when it hurteth most, and therfore is alwayes to be feared: because it alwayes delighteth, but in lookyng aside to these hye climers, I haue gone out of the way, of mine owne matter.
To returne to Duke Maurice, he saw that Duke Frederickes fallyng might be his rising, and perchaunce was moued with some old iniuries, but beyng of young yeares and of nature full of desire and courage he was a trimme pray for old practises to be easely caryed away with fayre new promises sounding altogether to honor and profite, and so he forsoke his father and his frend, and became wholy the Emperours till hee had brought both them into prison. Duke Fredericke was taken in the field and so became the Emperours iust prisoner. Yet as long as the Lansgraue was abroad, the Emperour thought his purpose neuer atchieued, and therefore practised a new with duke Maurice to get him also into his hands.
Duke Maurice with Ioachim Elector of Bra denburge became meanes betwixt the Lansgraue and the Emperour. Conditions both of mercy from the one, and of amendes from the other were drawen out. Maurice and the Marches bound them selues sureties to the Lansgraues children, for their fathers safe returne: for amongest the rest of conditions this was one of the chiefest, that he should come in no prison. And so at Hala in Saxony, he came boldly to the Emperours pre sence, who receiued him not very cherefully, nor gaue him not his hand which in Germany is the In germany, when there is any falling out betwene parties to give eche other the hand is A token of an assured reconciliation [Page/Sig: H2v] very token of an assured reconsiliation.
The Duke of Alua made the Lansgraue a sup per, and called also thether Duke Maurice, and the Marches of Bradenburg where they had great chere: but after supper it was told Duke Maurice and the Marches, that they might depart for the Lansgraue must lodge there that night.
On the morrow, they reasoned of the matter wholly to this purpose that the Emperours promises not the Lansgraues person ought to be kept. Aunswere was made that the Emperour went no further then conditions led him which were that he should not be kept in euerlastyng prison: and they agayne replyed he ought to be kept in no prison. When I was at Villacho in Carinthia I asked Duke Frederickes Preacher what were the very wordes in Dutch, wherby the Lansgraue agaynst his lookyng was kept in prison. He sayd the fallacion was very pretty and notable and tooke his penne and wrote in my booke the very wordes wherin the very controuersie stode, duke Maurice sayd it was.
Nicht in emig gefengknes .i. Not in any prison. The Imperials sayd no, but thus.
Nicht in ewig gefengknes .i. Not in euerlastyng pri son. And how soone emig, may be turned into ewig, not with scrape of knife, but with the least dash of a pen so that it shall neuer be perceiued, a man that will proue, may easely see.
Moreouer Luice d'Auila in his booke doth reioyce that the Lansgraue did so deceaue hym selfe with his owne conditions in makyng of which [Page/Sig: H3r] as d'Auila saith, he was wont to esteeme his own wit aboue all other mens. Well, how so euer it came to passe the Lansgraue was kept in prison. And from that houre Duke Maurice fell from the Emperour thinckyng hym selfe most vnkyndly handled, that he by whose meanes chiefly the Em perour had won such honor in Saxony, must now be rewarded with shame in all Germany, and be called a traytor to GOD, and hys countrey, his father, and his frend. And though he was greeued inwardly at the hart, yet he bare all thynges quietly in cou ntenance purposing though he had lost will yet would he not leese his profite, and so hiding his hurt presently, whilest some fit ter time should discouer some better remedy, he went with the Emperour to Augusta, where accordyng to hys promise he was made Elector Duke Maurice made elector. Yet the same night after hys solemne creation, two verses set vppon his gate might more greue him, then all that honour could delight hym, which were these.Seu Dux, seu Princeps, seu nunc dicaris Elector. Mauricij Patriae proditor ipse tui.
After that he had gotten that he looked for, he gat him home into his countrey: from whence afterward the Emperour with no pollicie could euer bryng hym, he alwayes alledgyng, the feare that he had of some sturre by Duke Frederickes children.
Hetherto the Germaines much mislyked the doynges of Duke Maurice. But after that he had [Page/Sig: H3v] felt him selfe so vnkyndly abused as for his good seruice to be made the betrayer of his father, he tooke such matters in hand & brought them so to passe, as he recouered the loue of his countrey and purchased such hate of his enemyes, as the Spanyardes tooke their displeasure from all other, and bestowed wholly vppon the Duke Maurice: and yet he bare him selfe with such wit, and cou rage agaynst them, as they had alwayes cause to feare hym and neuer occasion to contemne hym: Yea if he had liued he would sooner men thinke haue driuen all Spanyardes out of Germany, then they should haue hurt hym in Saxony, for he had ioyned vnto him such strength, and there was in him such pollicie, as they durst neuer haue come vppon him with power, nor neuer should haue gone beyond hym with wit. He had so displeased the Emperour as he knew wel neither his landes: nor his life could make amendes when x. poundes of Benefites which he was able to do, could not way with one ounce of displeasure that he had already done: and therefore neuer after sought to seeke his loue which he knew could neuer be gotten: but gaue him selfe wholy to set vp Maximilian, who beyng him selfe of great power, and of all other most beloued for his worthynes in all Ger many, and now vsing the head and hand of duke Maurice and his frendes, and hauyng the helpe of as many as hated the Spanyardes, that is to say almost all Protestantes and Papistes to in Germany, he should easely haue obtained what soeuer he had gone about. But that bonde is now bro ken: [Page/Sig: H4r] for euen this day when I was writyng this place, came word to this Court, that Marches Albert, and Duke Maurice had fought, where the Marches had lost the field, and Duke Maurice had lost his life: which whole battaile because it is notable, I would here at length describe, but that I should wander to farre from my purpo sed matter: and therfore I in an other place, or els some other with better oportunitie shall at large report the matter.
Ye see the cause why and the time when Duke Maurice fell from the Emperour. And because he was so notable a Prince, I will describe also the maner how he proceded in all these doyngs, as I learned amongest them that did not greatly loue him. And because it were small gayne to flatter him that is gone, and great shame to lye vppon him that is dead, for pleasyng any that be alyue, I so will report on hym as his doynges since my commyng to this Court haue deserued.
the dehandion of Duke Mawrice/ He was now of the age of xxxij. yeares well faced in countenance complection fauour and heard not much vnlike to Syr Raffe Sadler but some deale higher, and well and strong made to beare any labour and payne. He was once (men say) geuen to drinckyng, but now he had cleane left it, contented with small diet and litle sleepe in this last yeares, and therefore had a wakyng and workyng head: and became so witty and secret, so hardy and ware, so skillfull of wayes, both to do harme to others, and keepe hurt from him selfe, as he neuer tooke enterprise in hand [Page/Sig: H4v] wherein he put not his aduersary alwayes to the worse. And to let other matter of Germany passe, euen this last yeare within the compasse of eight monethes he professed him selfe open enemy agaynst foure the greatest powers that I know vpon earth. The Turke, the Pope, the Emperour, & the French king,The Turke. & obtained his purpose and wan prayse agaynst them all foure: For he in person and pollicie & courage dispatched the Turkes purpose and power this last yeare in Hungary.
The PopeThe Councell at Trent which the Pope & the Emperour went so about to establish he onely brought to none effect: first by open protestation a gaynst that Councell, and after by his commyng with his army to Insburge, he brought such feare to the Bishops there gathered, that they ran euery one farre away from thence, with such speed as they neuer durst hetherto speake of meeting there agayne.The Em perour. And how he delt with y e Emperour, both in forcyng him to flye from Insburge, and compellyng him to such a peace at Passo, my whole Diarium shall at full instruct you.
French kyng.And of all other he serued the French kyng best, who fayre pretendyng the deliuery of the ij. Princes captiues, and the maintenaunce of Religion & libertie in Germany, purposed in very deede nothyng els, but ye destruction of the Emperor, & the house of Austria: for what cared he for religion abroad, who at home not onely followeth none him selfe priuately in his life, but also persecuteth the trouth in others openly with the sword. But I do him wrong to say he followeth none, who [Page/Sig: I1r] could for his purpose be content at one time to embrace all: & for to do hurt enough to the Emperor would become at once by solemne league, Prote stant, Papish, Turkish, & deuillish. But such Princes that cary nothyng els but the name of bearing vp Gods word, deserue the same prayse and the same end that that Prince dyd, who semed so ready to beare vp y e Arke of the Lord, & yet other wise pursued Gods true Prophetes & his word.
Agayne how much the French kyng cared for the libertie of Germany he well declared in stealyng away so vnhonorably from the Empire the Citie of Metz. But he thinckyng to abuse Duke Maurice for his ambitious purpose, in very deede & in the end Duke Maurice vsed him as he should: for first he made him pay well for ye whole warres in Germany as it is sayd .200000. crownes a moneth: And after when the French kyng fell to catching of Cities, duke Maurice tendryng ye state of his countrey brake of with hym, and began to parle wt the good kyng of Romanes at Luiz, which thyng when the French kyng heard came within ij. miles of the Rhene, he straight way hyed more hastly & with more disorder, for all his great hast, out of Germany, as they say that were there, then the Emperour being sicke without company and pressed by his enemy dyd go from Insburg.
And see how nobly Duke Maurice did which for ye loue of his countrey, durst fall from the French kyng before he atchieued any thyng agaynst the Emperour. And rather then Germany should leese her Cities so by the French king, he had leuer hassard, [Page/Sig: I1v] both the leesing of his enterprice, & also the leauyng of hys father in law still in prison with the Emperour. But as he had wit to take money plenty of the French kyng: so had he wit also to fur nish him selfe so from home as he durst first fall out with the French kyng, & durst also after to set vpon the Emperour till he had brought his honest purpose to passe. For there is not almost any in this Court but they will say duke Maurice did honest ly in deliuering his father by strong hand, which before left no fayre meane vnproued to do that humbly by entreaty, which after, was compelled to bryng to passe stoutly by force. And I pray you first marke well what he did and then iudge tru ly if any thing was done that he ought not to do.
For first he him selfe with ye Marches of Bra denburge most humbly by priuate sute laboured for the Lansgraues deliuery offring to the Emperour, princely offers, and not to be refused: as a huge summe of money: a fayre quantitie of great ordinaunce,Duke Maurice offer for the Lansgraues deliuery. certaine holdes of his, some to be defaced, some geuen to ye Emperour: and also personall pledges of great houses for hys good habe raunce all the residue of his life.
After when this sute was not regarded they a gaine procured all ye Princes & states of Germany beyng at ye Diet at Augusta. an .1548. to be humble intercessors for him, offring ye selfe same conditions rehearsed before addyng this more to become sureties them selues in any bande to his Maiestie for his due obedience for tyme to come.
Thirdly by the Prince of Spayne Duke Maurice [Page/Sig: I2r] neuer left to entreat ye Emperour, yea he was so carefull of ye matter, that his Ambassadors followed the Prince euen to his shipping at Genoa: who had spoken often presently before, & wrote ear nestly from thence to his father for ye Lansgraues deliuery, & it would not be. And wise men may say it was not yt wisest deede that euer ye Emperor did, to deny y e prince this sute: for if ye Prince had bene made ye deliuerer of ye ij. princes out of captiuity, he had won therby such fauor in all Germany, as w tout all doubt he had bene made coadiutor w t the k. of Romaines his vncle, And afterward y e Emperor. Which thing was lustly denyed to y e Emperor by the Electors, though he laboured in yt matter so sore as he neuer dyd in any other before.
Fourthly this last yeare a litle before the open warres duke Maurice procured once agayne, not onely all ye Princes and free Estates of Germany, but also the kyng of Romaines Ferdinand, Maximi lian his sonne king of Boeme, the kyng of Pole, the kyng of Denmarke the king of Sweden, to send also their Ambassadors for this suite, so that at once xxiiij. Ambassadours came before the Emperour together at Insburge. To whom when the Empe rour had geuen very fayre wordes in effect concernyng a double meanyng aunswere, & that was this: That it did him good to see so noble an Am bassage at once. And therfore so many Princes should well vnderstand yt he would make a good accompt of their sute. Neuertheles because duke Maurice was the chiefest partie herein he would with speede send for him, and vse his head for the [Page/Sig: I2v] better endyng of this matter. But Duke Maurice seyng that all these Ambassadors went home with out him, and that the matter was referred to his present talke who was neuer heard in the matter before, he wisely met with this double meaning aunswere of the Emperours with a double meanyng replica agayne: for he promised the Emperour to come, and at last in deede came so hastly and so hotely as the Emperour could not abide the heat of his breath: For when duke Maurice saw that all humble sutes, all quiet meanes were spent in vayne, & had to beare him iust witnes therin all ye Princes of Germany: First with close pollicie, after open power both wittely and stoutly, he atchieued more by force then he required by suite: For the Emperour was glad to condiscend (which surely in an extreme aduersitie was done like a wise Prince) without money, without artillery, without defacyng of holdes, wtout receiuyng of pledges, to send the Lansgraue home, honorably acco mpanied with (at the Emperors charges) the nobilitie of Brabant & Flaunders.
This last day I dined with the Ambassadour of Venice in company of many wise heades, where duke Maurice was greatly praysed of some for his wit: of other for y e execution of his purposes. Well sayth a lusty Italian Priest, I can not much prayse his wit, which might haue had the Emperour in his handes & would not. Loe such be these Machi auels heades, who thincke no man to haue so much wit as he should, except he do more mischief then he neede. But Duke Maurice purposing to do no [Page/Sig: I3r] harme to the Emperour, but good to his father in law, obtainyng ye one pursued not the other. Yea I know it to be most true when we fled from Ins burg so hastly, Duke Maurice sent a post to ye good kyng of Romanes, & bad him will the Emperor to make no such speede for he purposed not to hurt his person: but to helpe his frend, whereupon the Diet at Passo immediatly folowed.
I commend rather the iudgement of Iohn Bap tist Gascaldo, Iohn Baptist Gascaldo. the Emperours man and ye kyng of Romanes generall in Hungary, who is not wont to say better, or loue any man more then he should specially Germaines, & namely Protestantes. And yet this last winter he wrote to the Emperour that he had marked Duke Maurice well in all his doynges agaynst the Turke, and of all men that euer he had sene, he had a head to forecast the best with pollicie and wit, and a hart to set vppon it with courage and speed, & also a discression to stay most wisely vpon the very pricke of aduauntage.
Marches Marignan told some in this Court foure yeares ago that Duke Maurice should become the greatest enemy to the Emperour that euer the Emperour had: which thing he iudged (I beleue) not of any troublesome nature which he saw in Duke Maurice, but of the great wronges that were done to Duke Maurice, knowyng that he had both wit to perceiue them quietly and also a courage not to beare them ouer long.
Some other in this court that loued not duke Maurice, & hauyng no hurt to do him by power, went about to say him some for spight & therfore [Page/Sig: I3v] wrote these two spightfull verses agaynst him.Iugurtham Mauricus prodit Mauricius vltra, Henricum, Patruum, Socerum, cum Caesare, Gallum.
He that gaue me this verse added thereunto this his iudgement, well (sayth he) he that could finde in his hart to betray his frend Duke Henry of Brunswicke, his nigh kinsman Duke Fredericke, his father in law the Lansgraue, his soueraigne Lord the Emperour, his confederate the French kyng, breakyng all bondes of frendshyp, nature, law, obedience, and othe, shall besides all these, de ceaue all men if at length he do not deceaue hym selfe. This verse and this sentence, the one made of spight, the other spoken of displeasure be here commended as men be affectioned. For any part as I can not accuse him for all: so will I not excuse him for part. And yet since I came to this Court I should do him wrong if I did not confesse that which as wise heades as be in this Court haue iudged on him, Duke Maurice. euen those that for countrey & Religion were not his frendes, that is, to haue shewed him selfe in all these affayres betwixt the Emperour and him: first, humble in intreatyng, diligent in pursuyng, witty in purposing, secret in workyng, fearce to foresee by open warre, ready to parle for common peace, wise in choyse of conditions, and iust in performyng of couenaunts.
And I know he offended the Emperour beyond all remedy of amendes: So would I be loth to see as I haue once sene, his Maiestie fall so agayne into any enemyes handes: lesse peraduenture [Page/Sig: I4r] lesse gentlenes would be found in him then was found in Duke Maurice, who when he was most able to hurt, was most ready to hold hys hand and that agaynst such an enemy, as he knew well would neuer loue him, and should alwayes be of most power to reuenge. If Duke Maurice had had a Machiauels head or a cowardes hart, he would haue worne a bloudyer sword then he did, which he neuer drew out in all these sturres, but once at ye Cluce & yt was to saue ye Emperors men.
Hetherto I haue followed the order of persons which hath caused me somewhat to misorder both tyme & matter, yet where diuers great affaires come together, a man shall write confu sedly for the matter, & vnpleasantly for y e reader, if he vse not such an apt kinde of partition as ye mat ter will best affourde, which thyng (Plato sayth) who can not do, knoweth not how to write. Herein Herodotus deserueth in myne opinion a great deale more prayse then Thucidides, although he wrote of a matter more confused for places, time, and persons, then the other did.
In this point also Appianus Alexandrinus is very commendable, and not by chaunce but by skil doth follow this order, declaryng in his Pro logue iust causes why he should do so. Our wri ters in later tyme, both in Latin & other tounges commonly confound to many matters together, and so write well of no one. But see master Astley I thincking to be in some present talke with you, after our old wont do seeme to forget both my selfe and my purpose.
[Page/Sig: I4v] For the rest that is behind I will vse a grose & homely kind of talke with you: for I will now as it were cary you, out of England with me, & will lead you the same way that I went euen to the Emperours Court beyng at Augusta. an .1550. And I will let you see in what case it stode, and what thyngs were in doyng when we came first thether. After I wil cary you and that a pace, because the chiefest matters be throughly touched in this my former booke, through the greatest af faires of ij. yeares in this Court. Yet in order till we haue brought Duke Maurice (as I promised you) to ioyne with Marches Albert in besiegyng Augusta. And then because priuy practises brast out into open sturres I might better marke thynges dayly then I could before. And so we will depart with the Emperour from Insburg, and see dayly what chaunces were wrought by feare and hope in this Court till hys Maiestie left the siege of Metz, and came downe hether to Bruxels: where then all things were shut vp into secret practises till lastly of all, they brake forth into new mischiefes, betwixt the Emperour and Fraunce in Picardy, & also betwixt Duke Maurice, and the Marches in hyghe Germany which thynges I trust some other shall marke and describe a great deale better then I am hable to doe.¶ FINIS.