Was Elizabethan England really a 'Golden Age'



  • Buildings- The Elizabeathans built many of the stately homes that still stand today. These houses were built to impress the Queen and other Nobles. For the 1st time houses were not designed specifically with defence in mind.
  • Exploration- Europeans discoverd new lands and people, and England began to become a mojor power at this time.
  • Theatre-Theatre was hugely popular during the Elizabeathan Era, many theatres were built and the period produced plays that are still preformed and studied today.
  • Art-Portraits became very popular and were much more than just representation of the sitters. They often included a lot of symbloism: for example, Elizabeth was painted with her hand on a globe to show her power. The miniture portrait was popular, these were very small, detailed paintings intended for personal possssion rather than puplic display. Other forms of art include decorative silverware and highly deatiled textile patterns.
  • Literature-In addition to great plays written during Elizabeths reign, Shakespear wrote many sonnets but seceral respected nobles also wrote poems. A lot of Elizabethan poerty made refrences to stories of Ancient Greece and Rome. 
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  • Education- Education was seen as increasinlgy imporant during Elizabeths reign, althought still focused on wealthy boys, there were very limited girls that would recive a limited education.
  • Science and Technology- There were some significant break throughs in navigation, astronomey and a growing understanding of how magnetism worked. Elizabeth's reign also saw more effective printing press, which produced books and pamphlets, these allowed ideas to spread much quicker.
  • Peace, Power and Pride- Before Henry VII became king, England had spent many years in chaos with diffrent men claiming the throne. Elizabeth's long reign established peace and order while military success and the county's growing weath also made people pround to be English.
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  • Blood Sport- Cruel competitions were still highly popular for example dog fighting and bear baiting.
  • Punishments- Cruel torture and punishments continued to be used. For example, if beggars were caught multiple time they would have thier ears burnt and eventually were hung.
  • Poverty- The population was very much divided: a small minority lived in luxuary whilst most people were very poor and made enoght money or grew just enought food to survive. Unemployment and begging increased dramatically.
  • Medicine- For most, life expencty was low and many disease that do not kill us today were leathal. Doctors had very little inderstanding of what caused disease.
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