Elizabeth I (1533-1603) , queen of England and Ireland (1558-1603) is the daughter of Henry VIII , King of England and of his second wife , Anne Boleyn .She was the last of the Tudor rules of England , and she gave her name to an era , Elizabethan England . Later , it was regarded as a golden age of national triumph and cultural brilliance , with a victorious struggle against the Spanish Empire typified by the defeat of the Spanish Armada , and the flowering of the English Renaissance .
English Protestants believed that it was important for lay believers to read the Bible , and endowing schools with money considered a moral duty . Many schools were founded between the reign of Elizabeth I’s brother , Edward VI at the end of the 16th century . These were mainly grammar schools , and there were two types : public grammar schools , which were given money by a wealthy or even noble patron to teach both rich and poor boys (not girls) ;and private grammar schools which charget the boys’ parents a fee for education . All grammar schools taught Latin and sometimes Greek .
Although education was more widely available by Elizabeth’s reign , it was still limited to boys and men ; nonetheless , only two out of every ten men were to sign their names in the 1550s . It is quite common to find documents from the 16th century where individuals have made their “mark” , a sign or symbol written instead of a signature . Education usually depended upon a person’s social group . Labourers were illiterate , but merchants were generally better educated . Gentlemen were usually literate , and often had the opportunity of attending one of England’s two universities , Oxford and Cambridge , where they could study classical literature , theology , philosophy , medicine , and law . Out of the whole of England’s population , perhaps 4,000 men were studying at Oxford and Cambridge at the end of Elizabeth’s reign .The sons of gentlemen could also study law at one of the Inns of Court in London , where the training could prepare them to be a lawyer in one of the law of the courts or , like William Cecil , 1st Baron Burghley for a career in royal service .
Elizabethan England did not have as many printing presses as some of the European countries , but the industry was a growing business . “Chapmen” , or wandering pedlars , sold “chapbooks” of popular stories and ballads to poorer social groups . Gentlemen could afford more expensive books , often the classical authors such as Livy , Tacitus and Aristotle . Religious books were popular and allowed English Protestants to read works by Martin Luther or John Calvin .
Culture and Entertainment
Elizabethan Style , in English art , is a period between the Gothic and Renaissance style . It reached its apogee in the late 1500s , towards the end of the reign of Queen Elizabeth I , and is often considered the last phrase of the long-lasting of Tudor style . Althought the Elizabethan age produced a certain amount of characteristic sculpture (particularly tomb sculpture) and painting (such as Nicholas Hilliard’s miniature portraits) , the Elizabethan style can be see in the period’s arhitecture – both in the great country houses of the nobility and in the timbered town houses of merchans and tradespeople .
The entertainments enjoyed by groups in Elizabethan society depended on wealth and literacy . Some of their recreational pursuits seem particulary cruel by modern standards : bullbaiting and bearbaiting , were the animals were fought and eventually killed by dogs , were popular and so , too , was cockfighting . Taverns , playhouses , and bowling alleys were all places in which townspeople could entertain themselves . Gambling with cadrs and dice , real tennis , and bowls were forbidden by law , but this did not limit their popularity .
Theatres , too , were popular , with standing room for poorer subjects and expensive seats for merchants and gentry . Elizabethan England saw the beginning of a golden age of theatre . Playwrights and actors such as William Shakespeare , Ben Jonson wrote and acted histories , tragedies , comedies for theatres such as the Globe Theatre in London , abetted by lesser talents such as Thomas Nashe , Thomas Dekker , John Lyly , T. Kid , etc . Courties patronized their own groups of actors , and these often performed at court for Elizabeth . Sometimes , courtiers , like Sir Walter Raleigh wrote poetry to practice their skills and compliment the Queen . The poets like Samuel Daniel , Thomas Lodge or Shakespeare himself took part in a great lyric flowring often expressed in the sonnet . Artists such as Nicholas Hilliard demonstrated their skills in portraying important membres of the court and contributed to an Elizabethan culture were the art and literarure expressed the power of the queen . Even Elizabeth herself , who was taught by leading scholars like Roger Ascham , wrote poetry , and translated the work of classical authors like as Horace and Plutarch . William Byrd wrote music for the new Elizabethan Church of England , and he was admired by membres of the nobility who believed that knowledge of music was important .
Crime and Punishment
Elizabethans had a strong fear of crime and , in the larger towns , would have been used to thieves , pickpockets and robbers . Common , too , were “masterless men “ ,or vagrants , who wandered the countryside . These 2 groups of people – criminals and homeless poor – were treated severely . Vagrants , were generally wipped and even those who could read were branded with hot irons to make sure that they did not use the excuse again .Serious crime usually meant that the accused would be hanged . There were other punishment for less serious offences : courts could order offenders to be put in the stocks (which held the feet ) or the pillory (which held the arms ) . Public display was an important patr of punishment , with the object of shaming the criminal into repentance as well as warning others , and crowds gathered to see offenders whipped , pilloried , and even hanged .
England was still a small country at the end of Elizabeth I’s reign , based an agricultural economy and troubles by war , but the kingdom’s cultural achievemants were massive . England showed signs of developing into a world power . The reign of Elizabeth’s siccessor , James I (and James VI of Scotland ), united the 2 kingdoms but replaced Elizabeth ‘s Tudor line with the Stuart monarchy .