Even the Roman Catholic Church produced the Abbe Loisy (though he undertakes to play off church certainties against historical uncertainties).
For some time longer the Tatars remained troublesome neighbours, capable of invading and devastating large tracts of Russian territory and of threatening even the city of Moscow, but the Horde was now broken up into independent and mutually hostile khanates, and the Moscow diplomatists could generally play off one khanate against the other, so that there was no danger of the old political domination being re-established.
At his death in 1519 Cardinal Giulio de' Medici (son of the Giuliano murdered in the Pazzi conspiracy) took charge of the government; he met with some opposition and had to play off the Ottimati against the Piagnoni, but he did not rule badly and maintained at all events the outward forms of freedom.
The powers were generally less concerned for the captives than for the acquisition of trading privileges, and the Beys took advantage of the commercial rivalry of England and France to play off the one power against the other.
The irritation of the latter was greatly Mazarin's own fault; he had tried consistently to play off the king's brother Gaston of Orleans against Conde, and their respective followers against each other, and had also, as his carnets prove, jealously kept any courtier from getting into the good graces of the queen-regent except by his means, so that it was not unnatural that the nobility should hate him, while the queen found herself surrounded by his creatures alone.