Britain: Elizabethan England - Foreign Policy 1585-1603

While studying GCSE History students will learn about Elizabethan England as part of their being taught the history of Britain. One aspect they will look at is the foreign policy of Elizabethan England and this is the second of two quizzes on that topic, concentrating on the late part of Elizabeth's reign.

Late Elizabethan England was at war with Spain from 1585 until the end of the queen's reign. She survived the Spanish attempt to invade England in 1588, and it became her foreign policy to become involved militarily both in the Low Countries and in France.

Test your knowledge of late Elizabethan England's foreign policy by playing this quiz.

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  1. In Tilbury Elizabeth delivered a rousing address to Leicester's troops, as the Armada appeared to be about to land Spanish troops. In which county was the speech made?
    Elizabeth delivered a stirring speech to her troops, flaunting her femininity and defying Spanish threats to invade
  2. Which Spanish nobleman, appointed to command the invasion fleet, died before it set sail?
    Álvaro de Bazán, 1st Marquis of Santa Cruz, died in February 1588 - three months before the Armada set sail
  3. Which Spanish port did Drake attack in 1587, thus "singeing the King of Spain's beard" and delaying the Armada's sailing by a year?
    The best way to forestall a Spanish invasion was to attack the Spanish fleet in port. There were plenty of ports on the west and north coasts of Spain that were vulnerable to raids by the likes of Drake
  4. What name was given to the Catholic side in the French Wars of Religion?
    The Guise family formed the backbone of the Catholic faction, who were desperate to prevent the accession of a Protestant king
  5. Which general from the north of Italy did Philip order to provide invasion barges and troops for the landings in England?
    Spanish troops had been grappling with Dutch rebels since 1566, but they were the nearest Spanish forces to the English coast
  6. With which group of rebels did Elizabeth conclude the Treaty of Nonsuch in 1585?
    Elizabeth was keen to stir up trouble in unstable parts of Philip II's empire or in nearby states
  7. Which king succeeded to the French throne in 1589, thereby encouraging Elizabeth to send troops to France?
    France had been convulsed in civil war since the 1560's. Elizabeth was keen to keep the pot boiling, favouring a stalemate
  8. Which English commander led the expedition to the Low Countries early in the war against Spain?
    Elizabeth's courtiers were keen to win their spurs in the anti-Spanish struggle, but the Queen favoured a more discreet and subtle intervention
  9. By what title (in English) is the Armada plan better known?
    Sending the Armada was a huge undertaking, and the Spanish were not expecting to fail
  10. What tactic did Drake use in 1588 to cause the Armada's ships to disperse?
    The Armada's ships had maintained a tight formation, which enabled them to reach the narrow seas between France and England. If only the Armada could be split up and forced northwards, then perhaps an invasion could be averted

Author: Edward Towne

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