Segments in this Video

"Elizabeth" (02:26)


The National Maritime Museum is hosting an exhibition dedicated to the personal items, papers, and art collections of Queen Elizabeth I. The goal is to give visitors a more personal look at Elizabeth than a normal history exhibit.

Elizabeth's Locket Ring (01:10)

"Elizabeth" is held at Greenwich, where Elizabeth was born on September 7th, 1533. King Henry VIII was disappointed that Anne Boleyn, his second wife, had not given him a son and had her executed when Elizabeth was three.

1st Earl of Pembroke Armor (01:34)

One of the first pieces in "Elizabeth" is Sir William Herbert's armor, from 1550. Though once accused of murder, he served as a councilor to Elizabeth and her siblings, Edward VI and Mary I, who proceeded her to the throne.

Coronation and Religious Pieces (05:00)

Elizabeth, a Protestant, ascended to the throne after the death of her older half-sister Queen Mary I, a Catholic. The exhibit includes "Portrait of Elizabeth in her Coronation Robes" from about 1600 and drawings of the coronation procession, which happened on January 14, 1559.

Elizabeth's Gift (02:06)

Elizabeth I was the first female leader in England. "New Year's Gift Roll" from 1588 recorded the expensive gifts Elizabeth was given by courtiers.

Elizabeth's Tournaments (02:34)

The Accession Day tournament was held every year to celebrate Elizabeth's rise to the throne. The exhibit includes numerous pieces used in the jousting and tilting events as well as portraits of important champions.

"Elizabeth I with a Sieve" (03:29)

In 1579, George Gower painted this portrait which represented virginity and chastity. The painting was done while Elizabeth was considering a marriage proposal from Francis, Duke of Anjou, heir to the French throne. The exhibit also includes portraits of Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester.

Elizabeth's Empire (08:31)

By 1579, globe imagery and the idea of Britain as an empire became more popular. The exhibit includes multiple globes, maritime manuals, and models of ships.

Elizabeth's American Colonies (02:41)

Sir Walter Raleigh was Elizabeth I's favorite when he landed in North America and named Virginia after her to persuade her to establish a colony. The exhibit has numerous maps and documents from the first colony at Roanoke.

Elizabeth's Rival (02:49)

Mary, Queen of Scots, was a Catholic with a claim to the throne that threatened Elizabeth's early reign. She was forced to execute her after keeping her imprisoned for 19 years. The exhibit has numerous pieces from that period of Elizabeth's reign.

Elizabeth's Navy (05:58)

Phillip II of Spain, a Catholic, launched the Spanish Armada in an effort to win England back from Protestantism. The British navy attacked the Spanish ships in the North Sea and defeated them. The exhibit has three portraits of Elizabeth depicting the victory over the armada.

Elizabeth's Image (05:44)

The exhibit includes multiple popularly produced images of Elizabeth I, like one made from a woodcut in about 1590, that showed her as an ideal queen. Many portraits included symbolism to show what she meant to the kingdom and the courtiers, who commissioned the paintings.

Elizabeth's Later Life (04:21)

Many of Elizabeth's favorites and key advisers died shortly after the defeat of the armada in 1588. Though she was in her 60s by the 1590s, Elizabeth refused to discuss succession, so her adviser Robert Cecil sorted out the details in secret. She died in March 1603 and the exhibit has numerous pieces from her funeral procession.

Credits: Elizabeth (00:47)

Credits: Elizabeth

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The only child of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth was born on September 7, 1533 in Greenwich Palace. From her accession in 1558 to her death in 1603, she was a great, beloved, feared, complex, contradictory ruler, and for many ever since she has remained England’s most fascinating monarch. Four hundred years on, the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich stages the most extensive exhibition ever of Elizabeth’s personal items, of portraits from her reign and of a wealth of other objects related to her life and times. Illustrated with many of the exhibition’s key exhibits, this film explores Elizabeth’s life and characters, the England she governed and the court in which she lived. The curators of the show celebrate Elizabeth’s achievements and consider the many threats to her rule, including Mary, Queen of Scots and the Spanish Armada. They also consider the adventures of Elizabeth’s seafarers, such as Francis Drake and Martin Frobisher, and the importance of trade and exploration to Tudor England and to the later British Empire. Elizabeth is an Illuminations production in association with the National Maritime Museum.

Length: 50 minutes

Item#: BVL194783

ISBN: 978-1-64623-654-1

Copyright date: ©2003

Closed Captioned

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