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THE NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY

AITOR, LÉNoi

TLDAN WOUNDATIONS

England-The Sea Fighters

1053

eager as ever to attack the Spaniards; and there were many of his countrymen of the same mind, the majority of whom carried out their wishes.

Naval success became like a religion to these daring founders of Britain's supremacy on the sea. Once Lord Howard with only six ships chanced upon a fleet of over fifty Spanish men-of-war off the Azores Islands. He made good his escape; but one of his captains, Sir Richard Grenville, refused, even in face of such impossible odds, to turn his back upon the enemy. He had only one hundred well men in his little ship, the Revenge; but in deliberate defiance of the admiral's commands he awaited alone the attack of the whole Spanish navy.

The fight that followed is unrivalled in history. All afternoon, all night, and far into the next day, the Revenge battled against the huge galleons which encircled her with a ring of fire. Four of them she sank. Fifteen of them her little band of heroes beat back, one after another, as they attempted to board her. Two thousand of the Spanish sailors were slain. Then, at last, her powder being all gone and most of her men dead or so repeatedly wounded as to be beyond resistance, the Revenge was captured. Sir Richard Grenville was borne aboard a Spanish ship to die, and in a storm that followed the wreck of the Revenge sank, in company with nearly thirty more of the battered Spanish galleons.

It was deeds such as this that ke, the power of Spain, and made Elizabeth's reign what it is, the glory of the English race.

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ELIZABETH AND HER COURT

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INCE Elizabeth was the last of the Tudors, the Stuart line begins with the coronation of James VI. of Scotland in 1603. You remember that he was the only son of Mary, Queen of Scots, and a great-grandson of Margaret, sister of Henry VIII. This made him the nearest heir, and Parliament chose him as James I. of England. His accession united England and Scotland under one king, but each had its own Parliament, its own Church, and its own laws. The strange sight was presented of a sovereign ruling over three kingdoms, each with a different religion, for England was Episcopal, Scotland Independent, and Ireland Catholic.

You cannot forget the hideous circumstances under which the infancy of James I. was passed, and the effects of heredity were startlingly shown in him. He never recovered from the shock of the assassination of his mother's secretary, almost before his eyes. Such was his mortal horror of violence that he shivered at the sight of a sword. His body was ill-supported, so that he wabbled like a drunken man when walking; he had big, protruding eyes, and his tongue was so cumbrous that it was hard to understand his thick utterance. He was always in fear of the assassin's dagger, and swathed himself in padded clothes. One of his terrors was witchcraft, and he caused the passage of a savage law under which many poor, old, friendless, decrepit women were put to death. His head was crammed with "job lots" of knowledge, all unreliable, but he always believed he was a profoundly learned man. He wrote common

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RULERS OF ENGLAND DURING THE GROWTH AND DECLINE OF KINGLY POWER

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