Elizabeth I Research Paper

1598 words 7 pages
English III

Elizabeth I

I, Overview

Elizabeth I (known simply as "Elizabeth" until the accession of Elizabeth II; 7 September 1533 – 24 March 1603) was queen regnant of England and Ireland from 17 November 1558 until her death. Sometimes called "The Virgin Queen", "Gloriana" or "Good Queen Bess", Elizabeth was the fifth and last monarch of the Tudor dynasty. The daughter of Henry VIII, she was born a princess, but her mother, Anne Boleyn, was executed two and a half years after her birth.[1]

Elizabeth was a different kind of Queen: quick-witted, clever and able to use feminine wiles to get her own way. Elizabeth could be as ruthless and calculating as any king before her but at the same time she was vain, sentimental and easily
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As a likely successor to Elizabeth, Mary spent 19 years as Elizabeth's prisoner because Mary was the focus for rebellion and possible assassination plots, such as the Babington Plot of 1586. 

Mary was also a temptation for potential invaders such as Philip II. In a letter of 1586 to Mary, Elizabeth wrote, 'You have planned ... to take my life and ruin my kingdom ... I never proceeded so harshly against you.' Despite Elizabeth's reluctance to take drastic action, on the insistence of Parliament and her advisers, Mary was tried, found guilty and executed in 1587.
In 1588, aided by bad weather, the English navy scored a great victory over the Spanish invasion fleet of around 130 ships - the 'Armada'. The Armada was intended to overthrow the Queen and re-establish Roman Catholicism by conquest, as Philip II believed he had a claim to the English throne through his marriage to Mary.

During Elizabeth's long reign, the nation also suffered from high prices and severe economic depression, especially in the countryside, during the 1590s. The war against Spain was not very successful after the Armada had been beaten and, together with other campaigns, it was very costly. 

Though she kept a tight rein on government expenditure, Elizabeth left large debts to her successor. Wars during Elizabeth's reign are estimated to have cost over £5 million

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