Queen Elizabeth I’s Greatest Accomplishments
During the reign of Queen Elizabeth, from 1558 to 1603, England witnessed a lot of improvement, from the military, especially the navy, to the economy. Barring her slight use of violence and executions to restore England to Protestantism, Queen Elizabeth I’s reign is fondly remembered for guiding England into its golden age. Other feats chalked during her 44-year reign include:
- Elizabeth I brought under control the bloodshed and executions that were so often a feature of her predecessor’s reign. In order to do this, she used parliamentary acts such as the Act of Uniformity and the Act of Supremacy (passed by Parliament in 1559) to arm herself with enough power under the Church of England.
- She rallied her Royal Navy to defeat the fierce and powerful Spanish Armada in 1588. With the victory over the Spanish Armada, Queen Elizabeth I in effect announced to other European powers that England was a force to be reckoned with.
- Queen Elizabeth I was a massive admirer of the arts and culture, promoting the development of new theater houses which in turn helped some of the greatest English playwrights like William Shakespeare, Edmund Spenser, and Christopher Marlowe to flourish.
- With a lot of foresight, this powerful female monarch was able to transform England’s military and make her country a real major power in Europe. Prior to the attempted invasion of England by the Spanish Armada, Elizabeth had spent quite a lot in the previous decade revamping her naval strength. She had given the order for very maneuverable and steady ships to be constructed. Her foresight as well as the inspirational speech she gave to her commanders helped England secure victory over Phillip II of Spain’s Armada.
- England’s economy soared in the first part of her reign. This was buoyed on by the growth of commercial activities in urban areas. To put things into perspective, at the time of her death (in 1603), the capital London could boast of almost quarter of a million inhabitants.
- Having established herself in her kingdom and in the Church of England as an authoritative female figure, Queen Elizabeth I was able to carefully position herself as one of the leading monarchs in all of Europe. She was certainly the most powerful woman in the world at the time. This was buoyed on by the fact that she quelled an invasion of England by Spain in 1588,
- Praised for her massive amounts of self-confidence, courage and wits, Elizabeth was able to hold her kingdom together, preventing it from getting torn apart by massive conflict between Catholicism and Protestantism. She was able to rise to the occasion by building a strong personality which reflected the stellar progress England was making at the time.
- In the centuries that have passed since her reign, Elizabeth I constantly gets ranked as one of the most influential British monarchs of all time. She shares that distinguished podium with monarchs such as Queen Elizabeth II and Queen Victoria.
Facts about Queen Elizabeth I of England
Born on: September 7, 1533
Place of birth: Greenwich, England
Baptized: September 10, 1533
Died on: March 24, 1603
Place of death: Richmond, England
Father: Henry VIII of England
Mother: Queen Anne Boleyn
Godparents: the Marquess of Exeter, the Dowager Marchioness of Dorset, and the Duchess of Norfolk
Half-Siblings: Mary (later Queen Mary I), Edward (later King Edward VI)
Nicknames: Good Queen Bess, the Virgin Queen
Coronation: January 15, 1559
Predecessor: Queen Mary I (“Bloody Mary”)
Successor: James I (also known as James VI of Scotland) – her cousin and the son of Queen Mary of Scots
Length of reign: 44 years
Godchildren: 102, including Sir John Harington