Front Page Titles (by Subject) LETTER VI. THE MAGISTRACY OF THE TEN TO LUCA DEGLI ALBIZZI, IN CAMP, 10 JULY, 1500. - The Historical, Political, and Diplomatic Writings, vol. 3 (Diplomatic Missions 1498-1505)
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LETTER VI. THE MAGISTRACY OF THE TEN TO LUCA DEGLI ALBIZZI, IN CAMP, 10 JULY, 1500. - Niccolo Machiavelli, The Historical, Political, and Diplomatic Writings, vol. 3 (Diplomatic Missions 1498-1505) 
The Historical, Political, and Diplomatic Writings of Niccolo Machiavelli, tr. from the Italian, by Christian E. Detmold (Boston, J. R. Osgood and company, 1882). Vol. 3.
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Magnificent Signori: —
As much as we were grieved yesterday on hearing of your capture, through Machiavelli, and afterwards through Giov. Battista Bartolini, which made us fear that all our other citizens in your neighborhood had probably shared the same fate, just so much are we elated to-day by the news of your liberation, from which we conclude that the others are safe and free. And although the defection of those troops placed us in the most precarious position possible, because of the discredit and dishonor which it has brought us, yet the discomforts, injuries, and danger to which you have been exposed aggravates the matter so much that we regard it as a great change from bad to good to know that you are safe and well.
We could wish to repair all the other misfortunes in the same way, but as that is impossible, we must accommodate ourselves to circumstances, and think for the present only of consolidating our affairs in those parts. For this purpose it seems to us desirable if possible to have all the artillery and munitions which we had sent you brought back here, and to have them withdrawn to Pontedera for greater security. Also, without loss of time, to withdraw all the artillery and the remainder of the munitions that are still in the hands of the French, and to make every effort to provide for the defence of Cascina; which we have so much at heart that we shall not lose an hour in despatching some infantry there. We should have done so already this evening, had it not been that the danger which threatens Pescia is even more pressing. We learn from several sources that the Gascons are marching on that place, together with some other troops to the number of four thousand, and some hundreds of cavalry; which surprises us the more, as up to this hour we had not heard that any men-at-arms had left the camp. You can well imagine how much we regret this, which we are greatly inclined to attribute to some intrigue of the Lucchese. But we should not have attached any credit to this, knowing how fear makes these people exaggerate everything, were it not that we knew that some one from Lucca had told the same thing at Pescia, and under the influence of fear had withdrawn all his effects from there, which only a few days before he had stored there from fear of the French. We have sent some officers there with their companies, and think of nothing else than to provide for the safety of the two places, but first for that which is hardest pressed.
It would be well for you to notify M. de Beaumont of all this, and to try and get a reply from his Lordship as to the matters that have been intrusted to Piero Vespucci, and respecting which we also wrote to you this morning; and more especially with regard to the offer of troops. We should like to have a reply from him in writing, which we charge you by all means to obtain from him if possible; and you will renew to him the same proposition for troops to serve during the siege; so that the engagement of these troops be made with his consent, and that we may avail ourselves of their service to suit our purpose.
So long as the revolted troops remain in your vicinity, which will probably be not more than a few days, it seems to us that it will not do for you to leave, as that would expose our affairs to complete ruin; but whenever they depart you can advise us and have our reply in a few hours.
As we have no particulars from you as to the cause or the manner of your detention, nor as to the means of your release, nor any other details on the subject, we cannot definitely instruct you as to the course to be pursued when those troops leave, and if they should require you to go with them, either for the reasons that prompted your capture, or for any other reason. We must therefore leave this matter entirely to your own judgment; and fully persuaded that you will do nothing without having thoroughly examined all the circumstances and consequences, we can but approve in advance all that you may decide upon doing.
Your determination to call to your aid the Lord of Piombino seems to us in the highest degree commendable. We shall write to him this evening, to mount and proceed with all his men in your direction, and if possible to push on to Cascina; and if that cannot be done, then at least go to Pontedera, and to make every effort to send from there as many men as possible to Cascina, and to conform in all respects to whatever orders you may give him.
We have again written to-day in all directions for provisions, and especially to the Vicars of —, and have given them hopes that these hardships and annoyances will not continue long. It does not seem to us advisable to withdraw any men from Cascina, until there is a sufficient garrison of infantry to enable us to do it more safely and more creditably.
We have forgotten to tell you that, in case Beaumont should leave with the troops, and should wish to have some one of our people accompany him, as you cannot go with him, you must try to send Pellegrino or Francesco della Casa.
We wish very much to know the particulars of your capture and detention, as also the cause and the means of your release, if you can give us this information without danger to yourself or ourselves; but if you think it not safe to communicate it by letter, then send us some confidential person who is fully informed on that subject, as well as on all other matters that we ought to know.*
[* ]Besides the letters which we have given above, there exist a great many others that have reference to these events, and particularly to the measures to which the republic of Florence had to resort, not so much for the purpose of reestablishing their forces before Pisa (for they had decided not to avail themselves any longer of the French army) as for the protection of her own territory against any attempt on the part of the mutinous troops. But we forbear from publishing them, as they do not appertain directly to Machiavelli’s commission.