Front Page Titles (by Subject) LETTER XXXII. - The Historical, Political, and Diplomatic Writings, vol. 3 (Diplomatic Missions 1498-1505)
Return to Title Page for The Historical, Political, and Diplomatic Writings, vol. 3 (Diplomatic Missions 1498-1505)
The Online Library of Liberty
A project of Liberty Fund, Inc.
Search this Title:
Also in the Library:
LETTER XXXII. - 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.
About Liberty Fund:
Liberty Fund, Inc. is a private, educational foundation established to encourage the study of the ideal of a society of free and responsible individuals.
The text is in the public domain.
Fair use statement:
This material is put online to further the educational goals of Liberty Fund, Inc. Unless otherwise stated in the Copyright Information section above, this material may be used freely for educational and academic purposes. It may not be used in any way for profit.
Magnificent Signori: —
“Volterra communicated to me to-day, that yesterday, whilst conversing with D’Amboise about the things that are going on here, he touched upon the treaty that is on foot between the three sovereigns of France, Germany, and Spain. D’Amboise seemed very anxious that it should be carried into effect, because France has been much exhausted during the past year; and he hoped that with a little repose she would soon be in condition to engage in any important enterprise. He spoke so earnestly on the subject, as to make one believe that he would be in favor of accepting such a peace, even if it were disadvantageous for France. His Eminence told me further, that D’Amboise had given him to understand that in the event of such a peace the Emperor would come any way into Italy. Volterra having observed, in reply to him, that, as on the occasion of similar treaties and descents of the Emperor into Italy, it would be necessary for France to remember her allies and to protect them, D’Amboise answered that this would under any circumstances be the first thing to be done, as they would on no account allow Tuscany to be dismembered. True, the Emperor being poor, and wishing to travel in a becoming manner, it would be necessary for Florence to contribute and serve him with a sum of money, which however need not be considerable; but that it was important for your Lordships not to fail in doing this. In the course of the conversation D’Amboise allowed it to escape from his lips that the aforesaid three sovereigns intended under the treaty to divide Italy amongst themselves; but he affirmed at the same time that under the protection of France Florence would be saved and her situation even improved. During this conversation Volterra never lost sight of the duties of his office; in short, he obtained from D’Amboise all the above information, and if this treaty is concluded, it will not be until after D’Amboise shall have conferred with the Emperor on his way back to France. It has seemed to me proper to communicate to your Lordships all the information I have had on the subject, so that when D’Amboise passes through Florence, as he will, you may place some citizen near him who will advocate your interests and will know on what subjects to sound him.
“You must also know that the Emperor’s ambassador was this morning with Volterra, and told him that the Venetian ambassador had been to see him the day before, and had endeavored to persuade him on the part of his government of their devotion to the Emperor, and how anxious they were that he should come into Italy, so that they might together with him settle the affairs of Italy, which were in such a bad condition; that the Venetian ambassador touched several times upon the affairs of Romagna, in the hope that the Emperor’s ambassador would enter upon a discussion of that subject; but as he did not, the Venetian himself opened the matter, and began about the disorders in Italy, showing that Romagna had been devastated for two centuries on account of the Popes, who wanted to establish first one and then another as master of that province; so that its population was wearied, and in their desire for repose had thrown itself into the arms of the Venetians, who had received them, but that henceforth they wished to pay to the Church the revenues due to her. And as to the other lords, they were ready to submit themselves to their sense of justice. The German ambassador said that he had replied in a suitable manner, and, without noticing the arguments of the Venetian, he began again to say that the Emperor would without fail come into Italy very soon, and that his intentions with regard to Pisa were twofold; first, to give possession of that city to whoever gave him the most money for it; and secondly, that under all circumstances he wanted an annual revenue from it, as though it were his own property bestowed upon some one as his feudatory. To all this Volterra replied in a suitable manner, whereupon the German ambassador left. I write all this to your Lordships for the reason above stated, and confidently, so that this information may not reach any party where it might give rise to unfavorable reflections, etc., etc.”
“By your letter of the 25th I have your instructions respecting Citerna, and shall follow the matter up with all possible economy; but the Cardinal San Giorgio says that he has a secret offer. Still the negotiation will not be given up, and your Lordships shall be advised of the result.
“Die quo in literis.”