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"Great plan" of Gaspar de Colinia

zh. S. Metyolkina


Work is presented by department of general history of Pedagogical Institute of Southern Federal University.

The research supervisor - the doctor of historical sciences, professor A.A. Egorov

Article is devoted very important and almost unknown (in the Russian historiography) to an event which is connected with development of the Huguenot movement at the beginning of the 70th of the 16th century

Zh. Metyolkina


The article devoted to a very important and practically unknown (in the Russian historiography) event that is connected with the development of the Huguenot movement at the beginning of the 1570s in France.

The leader of Huguenots Gaspar Coliñi became one of the most visible figures in the history of France of an era of religious wars which caused mixed feelings in his contemporaries and descendants. "His unprecedented good luck got to him awe some and wild hatreds of others, but almost all admitted that they cannot but respect him" [14, page 58]. Charles IX called him "The father", Brantom wrote that Coliñi ". .byl it is very ambitious, proud for the king and dreamed to make him great" [17, page 275].

Ekaterina Medici "... in it saw the main enemy, the instigator to a mutiny and

the conductor of the dangerous ideas threatening with retraction of France in war" [9, page 205; 10, page 119]. However not so much the identity of Gaspar Shatiyon, the count de Colinia caused a controversy how many its plans and plans were differently estimated by contemporaries and historians. It is especially fair in relation to so-called Netherlands war and a role in its training of Gaspar de Ko Linyi. "It was talked of beginning war with Spain and behind this heretical vanguard to involve the Catholic nation in fight. Gave to this noble illusion of Colinia the will, heart and the life" [12, page 234].

Coliñi, as well as many other French noblemen, was dissatisfied with the world Kato-Kombrezy-skim of 1559 which Gabsburgov strengthened positions, and forced France to refuse its hegemonic plans. After defeat in Italy "the second estate" of France had to renounce all the gains. Financial bankruptcy of the kingdom even more worsened their situation. As far as France was able to continue war - a controversial issue, but conditions of the world were perceived by the French military as shameful: they lost fruits of the efforts almost for half-century [8, page 127]. Having appeared in such situation, they were forced to look for a new field for an exit of the aggressive energy.

On northeast border of France the military conflict because the Netherlands was on a threshold of national liberation war with Spain was about to happen. After the partition of the empire of Kala of the V Habsburg the Netherlands lands departed under the power of his son Spanish king Philip II. He decided to set the same despotic mode it managed to be established what in Spain in the Netherlands. However he badly knew these provinces which people differed in the rebellious temper and tendency to freethinking. The religious conflict became the last straw which exhausted all patience of Philip II. Distribution of the ideas of Protestantism so angered the king of Spain that caused a number of punitive measures. In squares of Brussels and Antwerp, inquisition fires flared. The burghers of Flanders long ago considering themselves absolute masters of the cities and not inclining neither before the French kings, nor before the Burgundian dukes, nor before Charles V, were revolted with his actions [4, page 254, 255; 15, page 59, 60, 61].

The discontent of the Netherlands noblemen was caused also by the fact that the Spanish monarch broke their privileges. Besides they hoped to improve the financial position due to laicisation of church lands, having reformed church in Protestant spirit pleasing to the local nobility. That with -

to destroy the Spanish domination, they were ready to accept the help even at the price of the partition of the country between allies: England, Protestant princes of Germany and France. The anti-Spanish opposition representatives of the Netherlands nobility - prince William of Orange headed, columns Egmont and the Horn, Wilhelm Nassaou together with the brother Ludwig [2, page 101; 7, page 196; 9, page 207; 24, river 230]. After rough negotiations of the delegates with a namestnitsa of the Netherlands dissatisfied - with pride accepted the nickname "geza" (beggars) which was contemptuously thrown into their address by one official from suite of the princess, - opened hostile actions against Spain, it was entrusted to duke Alba to suppress a revolt.

Therefore to look for an occasion to begin the Spanish-Netherlands war, there was no need. The rich Netherlands cities attracted the French nobility not less, than Italy. After defeat on the Apennines in the Netherlands an opportunity to take a revenge and to weaken the rival was presented to it.

In 1569 Gaspar Coliñi and Heinrich Na-varrsky signed an agreement with prince Oransky on creation of army with the purpose to help the battling Netherlands. A choice was made, it was necessary to convince the French monarch Charles IX of expediency of intervention of France in the Spanish-Netherlands war. The threat of retraction of France in the new international conflict became a reality.

Positions of Huguenots in France were strengthened meanwhile by the Saint-Zhermensky contract of August 8, 1570 according to which "... to Protestants provide as pledge them to safety of the city of La Rochelle, Maun-toban, Cognac and La-Charite" [1, page 113; 3, page 215; 6, page 21, 22; 13, page 215; 18, river 172]. After the conclusion of this peace treaty Gaspar Coliñi was included in the structure of Royal council again and even received 150 thousand livres [15, page 75]. Coliñi at this moment persistently proved to the king that war with Spain is necessary. So it happened that to Charles IX the desire to leave comes then

from a shadow of the mother and to play an independent role in political arena. Charles IX considered that he is kind of on the second plan in comparison with his brother duke Anzhuysky who was a favourite of the queen-mother and court Italians. According to Margarita Valois, "Charles was kind to the admiral Coliñi, La Rochefoucauld, Telenya, to La N and some other leaders of Huguenots whose mind and advantage appreciated... also became attached only to those people in whom he recognized these qualities" [23, page 514].

The king in a conversation from Telenya told about the advisers literally the following: ". I do not trust all these people; Tavann's ambitions to me cast doubts; Viyeyvil loves only good wine; To the Braid it is too greedy; Monmo-rans hunting and money-making interest; count de Retts Spaniard; other señores at court and in council are silly; my state secretaries, I will not hide that I think, are not faithful to me, frankly speaking, I do not know with what end to begin" [19, page 367]. Thus, for the king it was important to find the one who would be devoted to him among the confidants. And as such person, in his opinion, best of all approached Kolinya. Having learned about arrangement of the monarch, Kolinya returns to the yard in September, 1571

After the repeated invitations left without answer, on September 12, 1571 Gaspar de Coliñi arrived to a meeting to Blua, having secured with the charter of immunity signed by the duke Anzhuysky and Ekaterina Medici. Many of his supporters convinced the admiral of La-Rocheli not to go there, believing that the danger if not threatens his life from Ekaterina, then from outside Gizov and other ultracatholics. Realizing the responsibility as the leader of Huguenots and knowing what destructive effect will cause his death, Coliñi, however, considered that it surely has to meet the king. For this purpose the city of Blua which was called as "the capital of the world" as in Paris it was much more dangerous was specially chosen. Also the admiral did not want to miss opportunities to discuss repeated cases of violation of the Saint-Zhermensky peace treaty.

The arrived admiral found Ekaterina in a bed with fever therefore the king accepted him in the bedroom of mother. The informal character was observed carefully to the slightest details. Ekaterina asked that the admiral approached and kissed her. Charles at the same time joked: "Now, when you with us, my father, we will not release you any more". The memory of recent war and deep distrust to each other affected in the intense silence saying about how it was heavy to restore the former relations. Ekaterina has a little more a talk with the admiral, then he visited the duke Anzhuysky who was also not very well feeling who nevertheless met the admiral very kindly. In five weeks spent by Coliñi to Blua Charles, showing the arrangement, showered with its gifts and favor. The admiral received 100 thousand livres of compensation for personal losses in war and revenue in 160 thousand livres, equivalent to the sum of income of his brother from church the benefice. All confiscated possession and property of the admiral promised to return to it. To it also allowed to move with an escort from fifty noblemen everywhere - the privilege which is ordinary put only to princes. It is possible that aspiration to a pacification, characteristic of Ekaterina in days of regency and a sopravleniye with Charles IX, prevailed over thirst of revenge. However it is possible that it was only tactics: to give one more chance to the enemy that or to make sure of his artful intentions, or to change the opinion. Coliñi's stay at court counterbalanced existence of the armed mini-state in La-Rocheli where the queen of Navarre - Zhanna, her son and other Huguenots lived under the laws. Geographically they were in the territory of France, from the political point of view - no.

That to Charles IX, that presence of Ko Linyi represented for it an opportunity to take a step to the war in the Netherlands. The king hesitated on it, so far between him and the admiral will not be reached full consent. Kolinya asked to arrive informally [11, page 334, 335].

But, despite all done honors, the admiral did not change the position concerning "The great plan". It pushed Charles IX to a gap with Spain and to support of the Netherlands Protestants, saying that God will not keep the power in the king's hands if that does not enter the Spanish-Netherlands war. The young king was compliant, he was convinced by the admiral's arguments, Ekaterina Medici was meant a lot of work to keep Charles IX from a break with Philip II. "You stick to the world in the policy because this sacred and good deed", - the queen-mother did not cease to repeat. France did not support the Netherlands. However Charles IX's fluctuations became known at the European yards, welcomed them in England and were indignant with them in Spain.

However Coliñi with the colleagues persisted, he developed a detailed plan of the Netherlands operation.

The twenty-eight-thousand army led by Ludovic Nassaou and Zhanlis was prepared. In the Netherlands the organized groups had to open for the coming French troops of a collar of Lille, Valenciennes, Mons and other cities.

In May, 1572 the projects of the admiral were considered on Royal council where, however, underwent sharp criticism of his many members. So, on council the duke Anzhuysky, Tavann and Morivye spoke against war. Tavann proved the position by serious arguments. He, in particular, considered that Kolinya's plan was too risky; besides, the marshal noted, England, despite defensive alliance, does not wish that France was included into the Netherlands. Along with it the German princes, according to him, will be zealous not too in this war and therefore all weight will inevitably fall on it France. Tavann considered unreliable the help Netherlands ge-call as their forces seemed insignificant while the duke Alba was a serious rival [21, page 187]. Morivye pointed that the Netherlands is rather freedom-loving and after exile of Spaniards they will hardly want to obey to France. In for -

a klyucheniye he told that "... the king has to seek to clean everything inside, without stretching a hand outside" [16, page 311]. Coliñi agreed to differ in spite of the fact that Marivye and Tavann's reasoning called into his plan into question. Coliñi appealed to the secretary Dyuplessi Morna that that once again stated his program and disproved Tavann and Morivye's arguments. To Morna made "The address to the king Charles IX about war against Spain in the Netherlands" it was approved by Coliñi and it is presented to the king [20, page 21-36].

And though it was made to Dyuplessi-Morna in effect, Coliñi's thoughts were stated there. In "address" it was told about the war reasons, it was specified on whom Charles IX could count as the allies. If Tavann expressed no confidence in relation to England and Germany, then to Morna and Coliñi, on the contrary, saw in them reliable allies. The admiral was sure of an easy and fast victory which could unite France and strengthen his authority. The next lines "Addresses" demonstrate to it: ".sledut to undertake external war to maintain the peace within the country, and, as well as to all good politicians, it is necessary to win time to put at the head of the hardy people of the external enemy. that the people" [20, page 21] did not become it. Coliñi had one more motive to aspire to the war in the Netherlands. He knew that the French officers who were involved in civil war got used to be at war, were hardly restored to peaceful life and could provoke disorders within the country. To prevent this danger, he decided to distract them by means of war. This thought was expressed in a note which he sent to Kardu IX. "The wisest politicians, - he wrote, - always know that the aggressive people should have the external enemy that it did not turn weapon against itself(himself). In character of the Frenchman - hardly to leave weapon which he at least once picked up and to turn it against the fellow citizens when it cannot use it against the external enemy.

Italians, Germans and Swisses returned to themselves when the peace was made. But the Frenchman who hates the house, rest and all arts will look for the wars in other country or if it has no reason to continue this study, will be engaged in robbery on the main road. In time to warn such disorder, we need foreign war which will be fair, easy and favorable, war which I offer, - against the king of Spain" [20, river 22]. In fact Coliñi was afraid of turbulent character of noblemen-Protestants, than Catholic noblemen much more. He too long and closely communicated with the brothers in faith not to imagine their mood. "I know, - told Brant - everything that I was told about it by the admiral in La-Rocheli; he well saw on character of the Huguenots that if not to occupy them and not to entertain in out of, then they will begin to confuse the issue from within as he knew them as people confused, restless, unruly and fans to find to itself class in taste" [17, river 280].

This plan had to be carried out in two directions in the Netherlands and the Spanish colonies of the New World.

In July, 1572 the group from 4000 Protestants under Zhanlis's command hurries to the aid of Ludovic de Nassaou besieged in Monet by Spaniards, but is ambushed. "This defeat brings confusion in hearts and minds... and fear. covers the queen" [21, river 189]. At this time the army of invasion which Coliñi has to head is formed.

He decided that it is necessary to strike at the same time a blow to the Spanish colonies in the New World to force Spaniards to work on two fronts. Coliñi was inspired that the king was in accord with him concerning the war in the Netherlands. Coliñi during the summer prepared the small squadron from well prepared troops intended for diversion in the New World and attacks on the Spanish colonies which were there. On July 4, 1571 under command of Mingetyer, the talented sailor, it is reserved was the squadron with a mission is sent to learn

about ports and a situation on the Antilles. "But avarice, - told Tu, - failed a task. Those which were sent to find out about the country began to plunder it, the sweet of a profit forced them to neglect danger, and, having shown all the force, all of them died. Found on the island of Santo Domingo, all of them to uniform were killed" [22, page 48, 49]. Was considered that the French bribed by the Spanish agents warned the government of this country which took measures to break the expedition prepared by the admiral.

Coliñi's activity knew no limit. Charles IX did not doubt wisdom of his plans. But ways of adherents were followed by Ekaterina Medici. Impudent plans of the tireless and convinced of correctness actions of Coliñi filled serious with misgivings to the queen-mother. The weighed situation assessment in France: the confessional split which had the political background, and acute financial shortage, not to mention perfidy and Philip II's cunning prevented the queen-mother to support "the great plan" of the admiral. Besides, at it the memory of the last months of last war was still fresh: to threat to Paris and sovereignty of France. The queen Ekaterina was sure of utopianism of an invention of Coliñi. Besides reasons of an ethical order took place: the conditions of the French-Spanish world in Kato-Kambrezi providing joint actions for strengthening of Catholic church and fight against heresy and, at last, family relations with Philip II.

Progress of the admiral compelled the queen-mother to peace talks. On a wave of military good luck of Coliñi exposed severe conditions: along with the requirement of freedom of a cult he insisted on transfer to Huguenots of the ports of Kale and Bordeaux. The admiral played the game. Needing support and not finding it at court, he looked for the help outside the country. Kalla and Bourdeaux could serve as a payment to the English queen famous for the attention to Huguenots. The queen Ekaterina found Coliñi's requirements not only unacceptable, but also cynical. The admiral had to incur

punishment. This idea completely seized the queen-mother.

Coliñi gave a reason for the prosecution again. But before carrying out the intentions concerning the admiral, the queen Ekaterina wished to secure herself against the main associate Coliñi - the young successor of the prince of blood Antoine Bourbon of Heinrich Navarrsky. Behind him there were legitimate rights of the first prince of blood: as well as his father, he had the right to regency at the juvenile king, and in case of absence of successors - to a throne. This circumstance did Henry's candidacy to the most worthy for the device of dynastic marriage of the younger daughter Ekaterina Medici Margarita.

In April, 1572 the marriage contract between Heinrich Navarrsky and Margarita Valois was signed. Now it was necessary to eliminate Coliñi. The queen-mother considered it the only correct decision because stability in the kingdom was staked.

For the third day after Margarita Valois's wedding with Heinrich Navarrsky, in the morning on August 22, 1572, Coliñi was wounded by a shot from an arkebuza. The murderer Morever caught for the admiral when that came back home from Louvre. The place from where it had to strike the admiral, was chosen to shoot at Coliñi when that leaves the house to go to festivals to Louvre. Or, on the contrary, when he will come back after the meeting on royal council from there. The admiral left the palace and went to himself home. On the road he read someone's application. The shot thundered just when Coliñi bent down to correct the boots. One bullet got into the left hand, another tore off to it a forefinger on the same hand [23, river 514]. "This incident revolted all Huguenots who were there and plunged them into a full despair" [23, river 515]. Home to the wounded there arrived Charles IX and Ekaterina Medici who was not wishing to leave them alone. The queen was accompanied by Fruit drops, Never, They are bathtubs. The sovereign was anxious with the incident and wished judicial proceedings.

The wound was easy, and soon the admiral already expressed desire to go to Louvre to testify the respect to Charles IX. Coliñi was still full of strength. During the visit to Charles IX he, as always, called the king for support of the Netherlands Protestants and for war with Spain.

Ekaterina Medici presented to the king case of attempt so that allegedly the son of the killed Francis Ghiz wished to revenge for the father. She decided to prevent possible disclosure of the participation in crime. For this purpose the queen-mother announced readiness of a crown to deal shortly once again with rebels Huguenots and entrusted this operation to Ghiz, having given to the duke big authority. The decision of the queen-mother was apprehended by party of Catholics as the sanction for long-awaited punishment over enemies of a crown. The queen Ekaterina did not postpone the conceived operation especially as Huguenots already threatened it, accusing of prolongation of judicial proceedings. Business remained for the king.

Charles IX was in the dark about criminal plans of mother. Coliñi to whom he was respectful managed to carry away it the ideas promising to a crown the adoption of the French influence in the Netherlands. Therefore receiving consent of the king to punishment over Huguenots demanded preparation and convincing arguments. Knowing the son's position, the queen-mother hesitated on a direct conversation with it and charged to the adviser Albert de Godi to report to Charles IX about the plot which is allegedly prepared against it. The threat of this danger forced the king to support the plan of the Massacre of St. Bartholomew.

1570-1572 were years of the great project perceived then by Coliñi the instrument of national reconciliation in the face of the general enemy, Spain and the tool of political struggle against Philip II in the Netherlands.

The organization of these campaigns became already then model for all Protestant Europe, model which future monarch with success used after the admiral showed its favorable sides. The negotiations which had confidential character

between Charles IX and the admiral within the last weeks of the third civil war (winter of 1569 - spring of 1570) about need of war against Spain for Flanders, and associations Catholic and Huguenot

armies aimed to strengthen positions of Huguenots within the country. The plan which at that time was not fated to be carried out and which as a result turned back a personal tragedy for the admiral was developed.


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