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Letter #1379

Brussels, 1535-12-06

English register:

De Schepper informs Dantiscus that he sent him two letters from Lüneburg [cf. IDL 1356, IDL 1367], entrusting them to Mayor of Lübeck, Nikolaus Brömse.

De Schepper reports on his and Godschalk [Ericksen's] stay in Münster in Westphalia, where they saw the impressive fortifications built by the Anabaptists and one of the cages in which the Anabaptist leaders [Jan Beuckelszoon van Leyden, Bernt Knipperdollinck and Bernhard Krechtinck] are to be put [after their execution]. They also made a futile attempt to convert Knipperdollinck and Krechtinck, visiting them in prison.

Next they went to Antwerp where they reminisced about Dantiscus when speaking with Veyt Herle and other friends of old. They wondered if Dantiscus was still alive. Godschalk stayed in Antwerp, while De Schepper set off for Brugge to deal with personal matters.

De Schepper writes that he will spend the winter at the court [of Queen Mary]. He expects that Godschalk will come there, too. He sends Dantiscus greetings from Dean Mark Laurijn, his own wife [Elisabeth Donche] and his son [Cornelis jr.]. The little boy is plump and looks a lot like Dantiscus.

De Schepper recounts the news: the Duke of Milan [Francesco II Sforza] died on 1 November. Based on his will, his widow received the Marquisate of Vigevano, while the whole Duchy [of Milan] and 1,200,000 ducats went to Emperor Charles. God has also blessed the Emperor with the discovery of a gold mine in America, this news coming from Dantiscus' sponsor Ehinger. The Emperor spent a long time in Sicily where he collected substantial taxes as well as receiving 250,000 ducats as a gift. Next he went via Calabria towards Naples.

Papal Nuncio Pier Paolo Vergerio, who was in the Low Countries recently, announced that the Pope [Paul III] had agreed to hold a council in Mantua. The King of England [Henry VIII], who sentenced the Cardinal of Rochester [John Fisher] and Thomas More to death, has allegedly been excommunicated and his Kingdom interdicted.

Peace reigns in the Low Countries. Meanwhile, the Danes and the inhabitants of Holstein and Lübeck are rebelling; their fear for their own fate is making them reflect on [the candidacy of] Prince Palatine Friedrich [II von Wittelsbach]. Their mission will arrive in the Low Countries soon. The Emperor supports the Prince Palatine as the husband of his niece [Dorothea of Denmark]. Hoping that Dantiscus will mention this to his neighbours [i.e. Duke Albrecht of Prussia], De Schepper informs him of existing peace treaties between the Emperor and Christian [III of Oldenburg], Duke of Holstein, and between Lower Germany and Denmark, underlining that they contain no mention of Christian being entitled to the Kingdom of Denmark.

De Schepper indicates that he knows that Poland provided financial and military support to the Duke of Holstein’s faction. Knowing the peaceable attitude of the king [Sigismund I], he expresses the hope that this support was not directed against the Palatinate [of the Rhine] but was only devised to keep the city of Lübeck in check. Queen Mary offered to act as a mediator in the conflict, but Christian [III of Oldenburg] turned her down. In view of his refusal the Queen will support the Prince Palatine. The Emperor has written from Africa and Sicily, calling for efforts to achieve a peaceful resolution of the conflict.

De Schepper thinks that the King of Denmark [Christian II] deserves a lesser punishment than he is suffering; he is also outraged at the shameful treatment of his daughters [Dorothea of Denmark and Christiana of Denmark].

He jokingly complains that the anticipated ban on navigation and trade will deprive him of Gdańsk beer. Regardless of who might win, De Schepper fears the disastrous effects of an armed conflict and therefore fervently supports peaceful resolutions. He draws Dantiscus’ attention to the fact that it is a bishop’s duty to foster peace, and encourages him to persuade his neighbour the Duke [Albrecht I von Hohenzollern-Ansbach] to get involved in the mediation in Denmark. He himself will make a similar effort with Duke Frederick, on condition that someone persuades the other side to pursue peace as well.

The Count of Nassau suffers from gout but will come to the court soon. The King of France [Francis I] is taking no action. In De Schepper’s view, if it were not for his health problems he would have tried to seize the Duchy of Milan after the Sforza family died out. Overwhelmed by their misfortunes, the Swiss are not venturing out of their territory. There are many German foot soldiers in the Münster diocese, waiting for one of the dukes to take them into his pay. The Duke of Guelders [Charles II] has calmed down thanks to the French crowns paid to him.

From letters recently received, De Schepper learned that Erasmus of Rotterdam has published Ecclesiastes and turned down the church offices offered to him by the Pope [Paul III]. De Schepper presumes that Dantiscus already owns Ecclesiastes. He cannot send him the Books of Psalms because he does not have them to hand.

De Schepper is sending this letter through a Pole [Stanisław Cypser] who is just departing. He promises to send a longer one through the Fuggers. He asks Dantiscus for news. He commends himself to his mother, brothers, sisters and relatives. De Schepper’s neighbour [De Baillieul], the mother of Dantiscus’ young servant [Carolus de Tautenberg], commends her son to Dantiscus. De Schepper also encloses a letter to the young man. De Schepper asks to be recommended to Georg Klingenbeck, whom he knows from Spain and Augsburg, if he is still alive.

            received [1536]-01-18

Manuscript sources:
1fair copy in Latin, autograph, UUB, H. 154, f. 146-149
2excerpt in Latin, 16th-century, GStA PK, XX. HA Hist. StA Königsberg, HBA, C 2, No. 102 (enclosure No. 1)
3copy in Latin, 18th-century, LSB, BR 19, No. 26
4excerpt in Latin, 18th-century, SUB, Sup. Ep. 4041, No. 20, f. 18r-19v (fragments)
5copy in Latin, 18th-century, SBB, MS Lat. Quart. 101, No. 17, f. 60r-65r
6copy in Latin, 18th-century, SLUB, C 110, f. 84v-91v
7copy in Latin, 18th-century, BCz, 1366, p. 153-166
8copy in Latin, 18th-century, B. Ossol., 151/II, f. 24v-26v
9copy in Latin, 18th-century, BCz, 53 (TN), No. 108, p. 415-423
10copy in Latin, 20th-century, B. PAU-PAN, 8243 (TK 5), a.1535, f. 79-85
11excerpt in Latin, 20th-century, B. PAU-PAN, 8243 (TK 5), a.1536, f. 19r-v
12register with excerpt in Latin, English, 20th-century, CBKUL, R.III, 30, No. 95

Early printed source materials:
1Monumenta inedita p. 443-448 (in extenso)

1ALTMEYER p. 336-337 (excerpt in French translation)
2RDHD 1889 No. 14525, p. 1702 (Latin register, selective - only Danish matters)
3DE VOCHT 1961 No. DE, 315, p. 254, 277 (English register)
4AT 17 No. 579, p. 718-723 (in extenso; Polish register)
5BENNINGHOVEN No. 102, p. 56-59, Beilage 1 (German register)
6Españoles part IIIB, No. 21, p. 328 (excerpt in Spanish translation)
7Españoles part II, No. 80, p. 258-260 (excerpt in Spanish translation)
8CEID 2/2 (Letter No. 63) p. 315-324 (in extenso; English register)
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