Elizabeth I


Elizabeth I
(1533-1603)
   Queen of England from 1558. A daughter of King Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, she grew up at court under the cloud of her mother's execution on charges of adultery, lived a life sheltered from politics during the brief reign (1547-1553) of her half-brother Edward VI, and then lived in great danger during the reign of her half-sister Mary I (1553-1558) both because of her known Protestant sympathies during a time of Catholic restoration and also because, as the childless queen's next heir, she became the unwilling focus of plots by religious and political opponents of Mary. Although the England she took charge of in 1558 was militarily, financially, and politically weak, Elizabeth surrounded herself with statesmen of great ability and by the end of her long reign had made England a stable monarchy, a major European power, and the international leader of Protestantism. She reversed Mary's religious policy, restoring the independent status of the Church of England as it had existed at the end of her father's reign and maintaining a moderately Protestant and tightly controlled national church that pleased neither the relatively few zealous defenders of Catholicism nor the increasingly numerous Protestant extremists, commonly called Puritans.
   Elizabeth made her court the center of an elegant aristocratic society that became noted for its italianate and classicizing poetry and for its musical life. Especially after the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588, the queen became the symbol of England's emerging greatness, and throughout subsequent centuries, her reign has been associated with political and military success and with the brilliant achievements of the era that came to be called "Elizabethan." Although the queen herself was not a very generous patron, her astute political leadership and the large number of wealthy patrons and talented artists and authors drawn to London by the presence of her court made the Elizabethan age one of the high points in English history and the supreme moment of Renaissance civilization in England. Elizabeth received an excellent humanistic education under the direction of Roger Ascham, had a good command of Greek, Latin, French, and Italian, and as a young woman translated literary works of Margaret of Navarre and Erasmus from French and Latin. She often surprised foreign ambassadors with her mastery of languages and her familiarity with classical literature.

Historical Dictionary of Renaissance. . 2004.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Elizabeth I — (Elizabeth Tudor) 1533 1603, queen of England 1558 1603 (successor of Mary I; daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn). * * * born Sept. 7, 1533, Greenwich, near London, Eng. died March 24, 1603, Richmond, Surrey Queen of England (1558–1603).… …   Universalium

  • Elizabeth — or Elisabeth is the Greek form Ελισ(σ)άβετ Elis(s)avet of the Hebrew Elisheva, meaning my God is an oath, my God is abundance, God s promise, or oath of God. For more information about the name, see Elizabeth (given name)aints (from whom other… …   Wikipedia

  • Elizabeth R — is an Emmy Award winning BBC television drama serial of six 85 minute plays starring Glenda Jackson in the title role. It was first broadcast on terrestrial channel BBC Two from February to March 1971, and was later broadcast in America on the… …   Wikipedia

  • Elizabeth — ist die englische Schreibweise für den Frauennamen Elisabeth Elizabeth ist der Name mehrerer Orte in den Vereinigten Staaten: Elizabeth (Arkansas) Elizabeth (Colorado) Elizabeth (Georgia) Elizabeth (Illinois) Elizabeth (Indiana) Elizabeth… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Elizabeth II — (Elizabeth Alexandra Mary Windsor) born 1926, queen of Great Britain since 1952 (daughter of George VI). * * * in full Elizabeth Alexandra Mary born April 21, 1926, London, Eng. Queen of the United Kingdom from 1952. She became heir presumptive… …   Universalium

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  • Elizabeth — prop. n. [a proper name from the Hebrew, probably meaning God of the oath or oath of God .] 1. Queen Elizabeth II. of the United Kingdom, born 1926. Syn: Elizabeth II. [WordNet 1.5] 2. Elizabeth I., the Queen of England from 1558 to 1603. She was …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Elizabeth — • The wife of Zachary, mother of St. John the Baptist, and relative of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Some believe that it was Elizabeth who proclaimed the Magnificat Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Elizabeth     Elizabeth …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Elizabeth S.C. — Elizabeth S.C. is an inactive American soccer club based in Union County, New Jersey that is an inactive member of the Cosmopolitan Soccer League. History Elizabeth S.C. was founded in 1924 in Elizabeth, New Jersey by a group of German immigrants …   Wikipedia

  • Elizabeth — f The usual spelling of ELISABETH (SEE Elisabeth) in English. It was first made popular by being borne by Queen Elizabeth I of England (1533–1603). In the 20th century it became extremely fashionable, partly because it was the name of Elizabeth… …   First names dictionary

  • Elizabeth — Elizabeth1 [ē liz′ə bəth, iliz′ə bəth] n. [LL(Ec) Elizabetha < Gr(Ec) Elisabet < Heb elisheva, lit., God is (my) oath] 1. a feminine name: dim. Bess, Bessie, Beth, Betsy, Betty, Elsie, Libby, Lisa, Liz; var. Elisabeth, Eliza 2. Bible the… …   English World dictionary


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