Queen Elizabeth's Speech at Tilbury Character List
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Written by Jody Perry
Queen Elizabeth I
Queen Elizabeth I was in essence a woman hugely before her time. Women in Tudor times were viewed as the weaker sex and rarely had roles in society outside of attending to nobility or producing heirs. Steadfastly Elizabeth rejected all suitors and refused to produce a child, preferring that her country be her constant companion and the focus of her existence. Ironically although viewed as the weaker sex, Elizabeth only became the monarch because her older brother Edward had been a sickly child and passed away at a very young age. Elizabeth was very aware of the view of women that existed at the time and consequently her words and actions were always extremely well-considered and always intended to instill the greatest faith in her possible as a leader, and also to present herself as a warrior ready to fight with her army. Although dressed in the lush velvet and brocades of the time, Elizabeth would often wear armor over her gown or be seen holding a weapon.
Elizabeth was deeply devoted to her country and a woman of great faith who wanted to defend her nation's right to adhere to Protestantism and to not be bullied from that path by invading armies. She was a strong character of whom many were afraid but she did not display the tyranny and eagerness to behead her enemies as did subsequent female monarchs. As a speech writer she was extremely gifted at aligning herself with God and country and thereby automatically placing everyone else on the wrong side, including the Plantagnets who desired the throne for themselves, as well as foreign threats such as King Phillip of Spain.
Elizabeth's confidence and commanding attitude, as well as her ability to genuinely strengthen the country, are what ultimately secured her reputation as a monarch that her subjects could trust in.
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