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A History of England Principally in the Seventeent

272 Diario de los sucesos de armada Ilamada la invencible


style="text-align: justify;">[266] Oldys, Life of Sir W. Raleigh 38.

[267] Spondanus, Continuatio Baronii ii. 847. The word 'dicitur,' which Spondan uses, is omitted in Timpesti, Vita di Sisto V, ii. 51.

[268] A letter of Philip's to the King of Denmark, in the Venetian Dispacci of this year, which in general would be of great value for a detailed account of the event.

[269] The reports are in Herrera, Historia del mundo iii. 60 seq. In 1860 Mr. Motley (History of the United Netherlands ii. ch. xviii.) communicated extracts from the letters exchanged at that time between Alex. Farnese and Philip II, which reveal the wishes of each successive moment.

[270] J. B. de Tassis Commentarii: 'eo consilio, ut cum adventasset classis et constitisset in Morgat, qui est prope Dormiram [I read Douvram, as the copy from which the printed text is taken is very defective] districtus maris quietus portumque efficit satis securum, trajiceret Parmensis cum navigiis.' Papendrecht, Analecta Belgica II. ii. 491. In Motley i. ch. viii we now see that Al. Farnese in his very first plan pointed out the coast between Dover and Margate as the most proper place for the landing. A junction of the whole transport fleet with the Armada before Calais has something too adventurous in it to have been contemplated from the beginning.


The Earl of Leicester to the Queen. Hardwicke State Papers i. 580. The dates given above are New Style.

[272] Diario de los sucesos de armada Ilamada la invencible, in Salva, Collection de documentos ineditos xvi. 449: essentially the same report as that used by Barrow, Life of Sir Francis Drake.

[273] Diario 458: 'mandase salir 40 filipotes luego para juntarse con esta armada para poder con ellos trabarse con los enemigos, que a causa de ser nuestros baseles muy pesados en comparacion de la ligereza de los enemigos no era posible en ninguna maniera venir a las manos con ellos.'



Every great historic existence has a definite purport; the life of Queen Elizabeth lies in the transactions already recorded, and their results in the change of policy which she brought about.

The issue of the war between the hierarchy, which had once swayed every act and thought of the West, and those who had fallen off from it was not yet decided as long as England with its power vacillated between the two systems. Then this Queen came forward, attaching herself to the new view as by a predetermined destiny; she carried it out in a form answering to the historical institutions of her kingdom, and with an energy by which she at the same time upheld that kingdom's power. It was against her therefore that the hierarchy, when it could renew the contest, mainly directed its most energetic efforts: an author of the period makes those leagued with the Pope against the Queen say to each other, 'come let us kill her, and the inheritance shall be ours.' The chief among these was the mighty King who had himself once ruled England. She maintained a war with this league, in which it was at each moment a question of existence for her. She was assailed with all the weapons of war and of treason; but she adopted corresponding means of defence against every assault: she not only maintained herself, but created in the neighbouring countries a powerful representation of the principle which she had taken up, without pressing the adoption of a form for it exactly like her own. Without her help the church-reformation in Scotland, and at that time in France, would have been probably suppressed, and in the Netherlands it would have never taken actual shape. The Queen is the champion of West-European Protestantism and of all the political growth that was attached to the new faith. She herself expresses her astonishment at her success in this: 'more at the fact,' she says once, 'that I am still alive, than that my enemies would not have me to live.' That Philip effected so little against her, she believes to be due above all to God's justice; for the King attacked her in an unkingly manner while negociations were still going on: she sees in this a proof that an ill beginning leads to a disgraceful end, despite all power and endeavour. 'What was to ruin me, has turned to my glory.'[274]

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