This picture of Queen Elizabeth was made after the Spanish Armada defeat. It shows the rising maritime power of England as the fleets lay between the pillars of Hercules. It is also interesting in how it claims that she is queen not just of England, Scotland, Ireland and France but also of Virginia showing her plans to expand England's presence overseas. Virginia was named in her honour by Sir Walter Raleigh and he set up his Roanoke colony there in 1583. Ironically, it was a victim of the Spanish Armada as the scheduled supply fleets could not service the colony due to the impending invasion.

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by Stephen Luscombe