Elizabeth – The Virgin Queen – Part 2


In this section Starkey focuses on the early years of Elizabeth’s rule and her reluctance to marry. Her dalliances with court favourites like Lord Dudley provoked speculation, but what concerned her advisers was her refusal to consider a suitor from France or Spain, powers which constituted a military threat. She was in a precarious position: a Protestant Queen in a Catholic country, and Mary, Queen of Scots, who wanted to claim the throne and return the nation to Catholic rule, was a great threat to Elizabeth.

Elizabeth, the virgin Queen, the most powerful woman in English history. She emerged as a young princess against a backdrop of civil unrest, political intrigue, executions and coups. She ruled for 45 years and presided over a new kind of state. Her reign saw England emerge from the threat of European annexation to burst forth in a unique flowering of culture and became the world’s leading sea power. In this four part series David Starkey charts the rise and fall of her reign and reveals the powerful resonance it has for the present. This series covers one of the most glamorous and exciting reigns in English history, with bloodthirsty tales of sex, lust, murder and mayhem.

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