Elizabethan Foreign Policy


1550s & 1560s

1558 : Catholic Fracne = ascendant (Henry II) - Guise family powerful - Mary de Guise regent for her daughter

1559 : Treaty of Cateau-Cambresis - England represented as ally of Spain - Philip II marries Henry II's daughter - Henry II dies at tournament - Francis II marries MQS, Scottish Protestant lords depose Mary de Guise (fed up)

1560 : Elizabeth send an army to Scotland and fleet to protect Scottish nobles - Treaty of Edinburgh - council established Protestantism - Francis II dies

1562 : French wars of religion begin - Elizabeth sends aid to the Hugenots - traditional friendship with Spain, based on trade with Netherlands & mutual fear of France, begins to decline

1563 : Trade Embargo

1567 : Duke of Alva sent to Netherlands - direct threat to England (Elizabeth allows Sea Beggars)

1568 : Hawkins attacked in Mexico (4 ships, 100 men) - seizure of bullion by Cecil - trade stopped between Spain & England

1 of 5


1570-71 : Marriage negotiations between Elizabeth & Duke of Anjou

1572 : Treaty of Blois (England and France) - Sea Beggars ordered to leave, cause revolt when they arrive in Netherlands - Hugenot Admiral de Coligny prepares to help Dutch rebels - Aug Coligny shot at Massacre of St Bartholomew - Elizabeth begins different marriage negotiations with Duke of Alencon

1573 : negotiations with Alva - resotration of trade between England and the Netherlands

1574 : renewal of Treaty of Blois with new French King, Henry III

1577 : Drake begins his circumnavigation

1579 : For the next 7 years, events in Scotand are troubling - nobles fight for influence of young King, especially Essme Stuart, and agent of the Guise family 

2 of 5


1580 : The pro-English Scottish regent is executed and replaced by Esme Stuart (Earl of Lennox) - 12 months later James VI is seized by nobles and Stuart returns to France

1581 : Drake is knighted for completing his circumnavigation

1584 : Duke of Anjou dies, Henry of Navarre becomes heir. Catholic League - signs secret Treaty of Joinville with Spain (agree to drive out Protestantism). William, Prince of Orange, is assassinated, new Spanish commander, Parma, advances on Antwerp

1585 : Treaty of Nonsuch - Drake sent to West Indies (29 ships), sacks Santiago & Cartagena

1586 : Treaty of Berwick (Eng & Scot) - James gets English pesion of £4,000 pa

1587 : Drake destroys ships in Cadiz - sails to Azores & captures Portuguese treasure fleet

1588 : Spanish Armada defeated at the Battle of Gravelines

1589 : Major expedition force launched - Drake fails to follow orders - Henry III assassinated (Elizabeth sends army for Henry IV) - English army in Netherlands under Sir Francis Vere

3 of 5


1590 : Catholic League defeated at Battle of Ivry, Philip orders Parma to leave Netherlands, honours treaty with League & sends 3,000 men to Brittany

1591 : Elizabeth sends army to Brittany with Sir John Norreys - 2nd army under Essex - Normandy

1593 : Henry IV converts to Catholicism & makes peace with Catholic League

1595 : Attack, led by Drake & Hawkins, on Panama, fails, and neither man returns alive

1596 : Lord Howard & Essex sack Cadiz - 2nd Armada launched but fails due to weather

1597 : Essex in command to combat 3rd Armada - instead sails to Azores - England undefended - Armada wrecked by storms (again)

1598 : Henry IV makes peace with Spain at Vervins - Philip III becomes King of Spain

1599 : Earl of Essex sent to Ireland to put down Tyrone's rebellion

4 of 5


1600 : Lord Mountjoy sent to Ireland with an army to replace the Earl of Essex

1601 : A Spanish force lands at Kinsale in Ireland, but is defeated by Mountjoy

1603 : Tyrone surrenders and his rebellion against English rule in Ireland fails

5 of 5


No comments have yet been made

Similar History resources:

See all History resources »See all British monarchy - Tudors and Stuarts resources »