The war that occurred in Shakespeare's time was the Anglo-Spanish War between England and Spain, and it was fought mainly as a religious conflict between Protestant England and Catholic Spain. Phillip II of Spain considered himself a defender of the Catholic faith, while Elizabeth I of England re-established royal supremacy over the Church of England in defiance of the Pope.Continue Reading
Though never officially declared, the Anglo-Spanish War was fought intermittently between 1585 and 1604. Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway in November 1582. His actions between his marriage and the early 1590s have not been documented historically, but by 1592 he was a popular dramatist and a member of an acting company called the Lord Chamberlain's Men. He composed most of his plays in the late 1500s and early 1600s, which puts most of his professional life in direct juxtaposition with the Anglo-Spanish War.
The most famous event of the Anglo-Spanish War was the British defeat of the Spanish Armada. In May 1588, the Spanish fleet of about 130 ships, 8,000 seamen and 19,000 soldiers set sail from Lisbon. The English fleet, led by Charles Howard and Sir Francis Drake, numbered no more than 100 ships. Over the course of a lengthy battle, the English, aided by the weather, defeated and scattered the Spanish fleet. The Spanish lost about 15,000 men, and only about 60 ships made it back to Spanish ports.Learn more about Modern Europe
William Shakespeare was alive during the reigns of Queen Elizabeth I and King James I. Throughout Queen Elizabeth I's reign, Shakespeare wrote plays that were happy, optimistic and confident to complement the Elizabethan mood, while throughout King James I's reign, Shakespeare wrote plays that were dark and cynical, showcasing the Jacobean period's insecurities.Full Answer >
The Spanish Armada attacked England in 1588 in an attempt to establish Spain's dominance in Europe and prevent Protestantism from overtaking Catholicism on the continent. Other reasons included Span's desire to prevent England establishing a strong navy and Mary Queen of Scots' execution.Full Answer >
The Seven Years' War (1756-1763) was caused by ongoing tension between Great Britain and France as well as Russian and Austrian fears of Prussia's growing power in Europe, and it resulted in further colonial supremacy for Great Britain and widespread acknowledgement of Prussia as a major European power. However, the great cost at which Prussia defeated its southern neighbor also restored Austria's military reputation after its humiliation in the War of Austrian Succession, and while the war paved the way for British domination in India, it forced caused Great Britain to pass laws to pacify its new Canadian possessions that ended up sparking the American Revolutionary War.Full Answer >
The War of the Spanish Succession, waged between 1701 and 1714, was fought over whether the French Prince Philip of Anjou would be allowed to take the Spanish throne. Because this would join Spain and France, the powerful Austrian Empire claimed the Spanish throne for Archduke Charles of Austria.Full Answer >