formidable, discharged soldiers of the garrison of Tournay (then in English hands) threatened to join him (Cal. Henry VIII, vol. ii. Nos. 325–6). It was reported, too, in Spain that he had been given the command of a French fleet. Later in the year he led a company of six thousand men against the English at the siege of Thérouanne. In 1514 Louis gave him twelve thousand landsknechts ‘to keep Normandy, and also to enter into England and to conquer the same’ (Hall, Chronicle, p. 568, ed. Ellis). He conducted them to St. Malo in Brittany, to embark, it was supposed, for Scotland. Their behaviour in France had been so riotous that the people were glad to get rid of them. But peace was concluded with England before their departure. Henry VIII had insisted on Richard's surrender. To that Louis would not consent, but he desired Richard to leave France, and gave him letters to the municipal authorities of Metz in Lorraine (an imperial city), requesting them to give him a good reception. He entered Metz on 2 Sept. 1514, with a company of sixty horsemen and a guard of honour given him by the Duke of Lorraine. The town gave him a present of wine and oats for his horses, with a temporary safe-conduct renewable at convenience.
When Louis XII died (1 Jan. 1515), Francis I continued Pole's allowance, and he remained for some years at Metz. English ambassadors organised conspiracies for his capture. In February 1516 an Englishman who had been arrested confessed that he had been sent by Henry VIII to kill him. During a visit to Francis I at Lyons in March he obtained, it would seem, a distinct promise from the French king to support his title to the crown of England at a convenient opportunity (Letters and Papers of Henry VIII, Nos. 1711, 1973, 2113). In the summer he paid a visit to Robert de la Marck at Florange. On Christmas day he again left Metz secretly, along with the Duke of Gueldres, who had come thither in disguise. Proceeding to Paris, he visited the French king by night. He returned to Metz on 17 Feb. 1516–17. Spies employed by England tried hard to discover his plans. Between June and August, accompanied by several young gentlemen of Metz, he paid visits to Milan and Venice.
Early in 1518 there were rumours that Francis I was about to send him into England to dispute Henry's title to the throne. But between 8 May and 24 Oct. he spent most of his time in Lombardy. Although peace was made between England and France on 2 Oct., it was reported to Wolsey that Francis favoured ‘White Rose,’ as Pole was called, more than ever, and had augmented his stipend.
Pole had hitherto resided in Metz in a fine pleasure-house named Passe Temps, which a chevalier named Claude Baudoiche had lent him. In February 1519 the owner desired to resume possession. Thereupon the chapter of Metz gave him for life a mansion called La Haulte-Pierre, near St. Simphorien, at a low rent on his undertaking to rebuild it. This he did in magnificent style. His tastes were luxurious, and he initiated horse-racing at Metz; but after losing money in the pastime he gave it up.
After the death of the Emperor Maximilian, in January 1519, Francis I sent Pole to Prague to influence Louis, the young king of Bohemia, and his tutor Sigismund, king of Portugal, in favour of his candidature for the imperial crown (Colbert MS. 385 in Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris). In September some disturbances caused by an intrigue which he had carried on with a citizen's wife led him to leave Metz for Toul, whither his paramour escaped after him. There he remained during the next three years—in the house of the cardinal of Lorraine. His company of landsknechts was dismissed.
In 1522, when England and France were again at war, Francis contemplated sending Pole to invade England. At the close of 1522 he was in Paris with Francis, and frequently rode through the streets. The French king showed like courtesies to John Stewart, duke of Albany [q. v.], the regent of Scotland, who was arranging an attack on England from the north. In 1523 Pole and Albany went to Brittany to make preparations for a joint invasion of England. They left the French coast together, and Albany reached Scotland at the end of September, when he announced that he had parted at sea on Monday (21 Sept.) with his ‘cousin, the Duke of Suffolk,’ who was about to carry out an invasion of England. Nothing further is recorded of Pole's movements, and the invasion did not take place.
In the spring of 1524 he served in the campaign in Picardy, and writing to Louise of Savoy, the mother of Francis I, from the camp near Thérouanne, he declared that all he had in the world was owing to her. On 24 Feb. 1525 he was killed, fighting by the French king's side, at the battle of Pavia. In a picture of the battle, preserved at the Ashmolean Museum at Oxford, his lifeless body is represented in the thick of the combat with the inscription ‘Le Duc de Susfoc dit Blance Rose.’ When the news of his death reached Metz, the cathedral chapter ordered an anniversary celebration for his soul.