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Elizabethan Golden Age for Seafaring

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The Elizabethian Age of Sail! At one time Spain was the world power, and their mighty fleet of ships helped them to become so! The Spanish Armada was world famous for being the largest fleet of ships the world had ever seen, but soon there was to be a nation to put a stop to Spanish Seafaring being number one! We have entered the Golden Elizabethian Age of Sail - where English Captains and Privateers for Queen Elizabeth I. was to change the world forever!

 The Spanish Armada


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Sir Francis Drake: The Queen`s Pirate




The Sea Hawk




Queen Elizabeth I

Sir Francis Drake

1590 or later Marcus Gheeraerts, Sir Francis Drake Buckland Abbey, Devon.jpg

Sir Francis Drake, Vice Admiral (1540 – 27 January 1596) was an English sea captain, privateer, navigator, slaver, a renowned pirate, and politician of the Elizabethan era. Elizabeth I of England awarded Drake a knighthood in 1581. He was second-in-command of the English fleet against the Spanish Armada in 1588, subordinate only to Charles Howard and the Queen herself. He died of dysentery in January 1596 after unsuccessfully attacking San Juan, Puerto Rico.

His exploits were legendary, making him a hero to the English but a pirate to the Spaniards to whom he was known as El Draque, 'Draque' being the Spanish pronunciation of 'Drake'. His name in Latin was Franciscus Draco ('Francis the Dragon'). King Philip II was claimed to have offered a reward of 20,000 ducats, about £4,000,000 (US$6.5M) by modern standards, for his life.

He is famous for (among other things) leading the first English circumnavigation of the world, from 1577 to 1580.


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The Sea Hawk!

2007 e-book edition cover

The Sea Hawk is a novel by Rafael Sabatini, originally published in 1915. The story is set over the years 1588-1593, and concerns a retired Cornish sea-faring gentleman, Sir Oliver Tressilian, who is villainously betrayed by a jealous half-brother. After being forced to serve as a slave on a Spanish galley, Sir Oliver is liberated by Barbary pirates. He joins the pirates, gaining the name "Sakr-el-Bahr", the hawk of the sea, and swears vengeance against his brother.


The Sea Hawk is a 1940 American Warner Bros. feature film starring Errol Flynn as an English privateer who defends his nation's interests on the eve of the Spanish Armada. The film was the tenth collaboration between Flynn and director Michael Curtiz. The film's screenplay by Howard Koch and Seton I. Miller is loosely based on The Sea Hawk (1915) by Rafael Sabatini.

The film was digitally colorized in 1991. Colorized versions have been broadcast on American television and distributed on VHS tape, but only the black and white versions, both edited (109 minutes) and restored/uncut (127 minutes), have been released in DVD formats. Currently there are no plans to release the digitally colored version on DVD.

The film begins with King Philip II of Spain (Montagu Love) declaring his intention to destroy England and after this "puny rockbound island as barren and treacherous as her Queen" is out of the way, he believes that world conquest will follow: "it (a map) will cease to be a map of the world; it will be Spain." He sends one of his courtiers, Don Alvarez (Claude Rains), as his ambassador to allay the suspicions of Queen Elizabeth I (Flora Robson) about the great armada he is building to invade England. In England, some of the Queen's ministers plead with her to build a fleet, which she hesitates to do in order to spare the purses of her subjects.

The ambassador's ship is captured en route to England by the Albatross and her captain, Geoffery Thorpe (Errol Flynn). Don Alvarez and his niece, Dona Maria (Brenda Marshall), are taken aboard and transported to England. Thorpe is immediately enchanted by Dona Maria and gallantly returns her plundered jewels. Her detestation of him softens as she too begins to fall in love.

Don Alvarez is granted an audience with the Queen and complains about his treatment; Dona Maria is accepted as one of her maids of honour. The "Sea Hawks", a group of English privateers who loot Spanish ships for "reparations" appear before the Queen, who scolds them (at least publicly) for their piratical attacks and for endangering the peace with Spain. Captain Thorpe finally appears and proposes a plan to seize a large caravan of Spanish gold in the New World and bring it back to England. The Queen is wary of Spain's reaction, but allows Thorpe to proceed.

Suspicious of Thorpe's expedition, Lord Wolfingham (Henry Daniell), one of the Queen's ministers (and a secret Spanish collaborator), sends a spy to try to discover where the Albatross is really heading, but to no avail; the courtiers are told that Thorpe is going on a trading expedition up the Nile River in Egypt. Upon visiting the chartmaker responsible for the chart for Thorpe's next voyage, Don Alvarez and Lord Wolfingham determine that he is really sailing to the Isthmus of Panama and order Don Alvarez's Spanish captain to sail ahead to set up an ambush. When the Albatross reaches its destination, part of her crew seizes the caravan, but they fall into a well-laid trap and are driven into the swamps. Thorpe and a few others survive and return to their ship, only to find it in Spanish hands. Thorpe and his crew are returned to Spain, tried by the Inquisition, and sentenced to the galleys for the rest of their lives. In England, Don Alvarez informs the Queen of Thorpe's fate, causing his niece to faint. The Queen and Don Alvarez exchange heated words, and she expels him from her court.

On the Spanish galley, Thorpe meets an Englishman named Abbott who was captured trying to uncover evidence of the Armada's true purpose. Through cunning, the prisoners take over the ship during the night. They board another ship in the same harbor, where an emissary has stored secret incriminating plans. Thorpe and his men capture both and sail back to England with the plans in hand.

Upon reaching port, Thorpe tries to warn the Queen. A carriage bringing Don Alvarez to the ship which, unbeknownest to him, Thorpe had captured also brings his niece. Don Alvarez boards the ship and is held prisoner, while Captain Thorpe, dressed in the uniform of a Spanish courtier, sneaks into the carriage carrying Dona Maria, who has decided to stay in England and wait for Thorpe's return. The two finally declare their love for each other.

Lord Wolfingham's spy, who had escorted the ambassador and his niece, spots Thorpe and alerts the castle guards to stop the carriage and take Thorpe prisoner. Thorpe escapes and enters the Queen's residence, fending off guards all the while. He runs into Lord Wolfingham; Thorpe kills the traitor in a sword fight.

With Dona Maria's assistance, Thorpe reaches the Queen and provides proof of King Phillip's intentions. Elizabeth knights Captain Thorpe for his gallantry, with Dona Maria present, and declares her intention to build a great fleet to oppose the Spanish threat.


  • Errol Flynn as Geoffrey Thorpe
  • Brenda Marshall as Doña Maria
  • Claude Rains as Don José Alvarez de Cordoba
  • Donald Crisp as Sir John Burleson
  • Flora Robson as Queen Elizabeth of England
  • Alan Hale as Carl Pitt
  • Henry Daniell as Lord Wolfingham
  • Una O'Connor as Miss Latham, Doña Maria's English duenna
  • James Stephenson as Abbott
  • Gilbert Roland as Captain Lopez, Don José's sea captain
  • William Lundigan as Danny Logan
  • Julien Mitchell as Oliver Scott
  • Montagu Love as King Phillip II of Spain
  • J. M. Kerrigan as Eli Matson
  • David Bruce as Martin Burke
  • Clifford Brooke as William Tuttle
  • Clyde Cook as Walter Boggs
  • Fritz Leiber as Inquisitor
  • Ellis Irving as Monty Preston
  • Francis McDonald as Samuel Kroner
  • Pedro de Cordoba as Captain Mendoza
  • Ian Keith as Peralta
  • Jack La Rue as Lieutenant Ortega (as Jack LaRue)
  • Halliwell Hobbes as Astronomer
  • Alec Craig as Judocus Hondins
  • Victor Varconi as General Aguirre
  • Robert Warwick as Captain Frobisher
  • Harry Cording as Slavemaster


Originally planned as an adaptation of Sabatini's novel, the film utilized an entirely different story inspired by the exploits of Sir Francis Drake, unlike the 1924 silent film adaptation, which was fairly faithful to Sabatini's plot.

The speech the Queen gives at the close of the film was, sub silentio, meant to inspire the viewing British audience, which was already mired in the grip of the Second World War. Suggestions that it was the duty of all free men to defend liberty, and that the world did not belong to any one man (an obvious insinuation of Hitler's wish to conquer Europe) were rousing.


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Queen Elizabeth I.

Elizabeth I (7 September 1533 – 24 March 1603) was Queen regnant of England and Queen regnant of Ireland from 17 November 1558 until her death. Sometimes called The Virgin Queen, Gloriana, or Good Queen Bess, Elizabeth was the fifth and last monarch of the Tudor dynasty. The daughter of Henry VIII, she was born a princess, but her mother, Anne Boleyn, was executed two and a half years after her birth, and Elizabeth was declared illegitimate. Her brother, Edward VI, bequeathed the crown to Lady Jane Grey, cutting his sisters out of the succession. His will was set aside, and in 1558 Elizabeth succeeded the Catholic Mary I, during whose reign she had been imprisoned for nearly a year on suspicion of supporting Protestant rebels.

Elizabeth set out to rule by good counsel, and she depended heavily on a group of trusted advisers led by William Cecil, Baron Burghley. One of her first moves as queen was to support the establishment of an English Protestant church, of which she became the Supreme Governor. This Elizabethan Religious Settlement held firm throughout her reign and later evolved into today's Church of England. It was expected that Elizabeth would marry, but despite several petitions from parliament and numerous courtships, she never did. The reasons for this outcome have been much debated. As she grew older, Elizabeth became famous for her virginity, and a cult grew up around her which was celebrated in the portraits, pageants, and literature of the day.

In government, Elizabeth was more moderate than her father and siblings. One of her mottoes was "video et taceo" ("I see, and say nothing"). This strategy, viewed with impatience by her counsellors, often saved her from political and marital misalliances. Though Elizabeth was cautious in foreign affairs and only half-heartedly supported a number of ineffective, poorly resourced military campaigns in the Netherlands, France and Ireland, the defeat of the Spanish Armada in 1588 associated her name forever with what is popularly viewed as one of the greatest victories in English history. Within 20 years of her death, she was celebrated as the ruler of a golden age, an image that retains its hold on the English people.

Elizabeth's reign is known as the Elizabethan era, famous above all for the flourishing of English drama, led by playwrights such as William Shakespeare and Christopher Marlowe, and for the seafaring prowess of English adventurers such as Sir Francis Drake. Some historians are more reserved in their assessment. They depict Elizabeth as a short-tempered, sometimes indecisive ruler, who enjoyed more than her share of luck. Towards the end of her reign, a series of economic and military problems weakened her popularity to the point where many of her subjects were relieved at her death. Elizabeth is acknowledged as a charismatic performer and a dogged survivor, in an age when government was ramshackle and limited and when monarchs in neighbouring countries faced internal problems that jeopardised their thrones. Such was the case with Elizabeth's rival, Mary, Queen of Scots, whom she imprisoned in 1568 and eventually had executed in 1587. After the short reigns of Elizabeth's brother and sister, her 44 years on the throne provided welcome stability for the kingdom and helped forge a sense of national identity.

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CLICK HERE for Plot Details, and to Read the Introduction and First Three Chapters!




Product Details (From

  • Paperback: 350 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace (November 30, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1449913172
  • ISBN-13: 978-1449913175
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds



"Nicely done. I really enjoyed the history in the introduction and the duel is well written. Best of luck with the novel!" ~ Author David Lee Summers, author of five books: Vampires of the Scarlet Order, The Solar Sea, and the "Old Star" science fiction series: The Pirates of Sufiro, Children of the Old Stars, and Heirs of the New Earth.

"Very exciting read! Felt like I was there witnessing the action!" ~ Candle Artist Jfay,

"I really enjoyed the humour and really laughed, not at Monsieur de la Donaree but with Monsieur de la Donaree! I dont know if you wrote it in this spirit but if you had a bit of Molière in you, I would not be surprised! He knew how to study people and would turn situations into a comic play! I laughed out loud, this is a gem! Not only de la Donaree is a fine sword, he has also a fine nose when it comes to pinpoint personalities, I'm talking about the Inkeeper and his situation with the wife here!! The second part is indeed in pure swashbuckling spirit, in rhythm and enthusiasm! And the end is a cliff-hanger! The beginning is "cocasse" (funny) as they might have said then in Gascony, and witty! Indeed Alexandre Dumas had a sense of humour too and satirically created at least one of his character ( in another book) to a character made up by Molière in one of his comic play. And Molière also took his inspiration from Dumas' s Musketeers and "The Man in the Iron Mask." I liked it! I had fun while reading this chapter about Monsieur de la Donaree, as while following the spirit of the Musketeers you gave a contemporary touch to the text!" ~ Artist Nicole Marques,

"Hurrah, Ted! I gleefully await the next installment! LOVE the romantic stuff! Bring it on! There are few things in this world I like better than a hot Viscount. Keep going, Ted! Bravo! Keep writing! I can't wait to read more! But it is par for the course as I am also a writer. Keep in touch!" ~ Author Genella de Grey, author of "Remember Me."

"Wow - What a wonderful beginning. As a whole, you have a unique way of writing & you captivated me by a few sentences peaking my interest to continue. For instance: ...hazed by the early morning mist...I love it! I look forward to reading the next chapter. You've gained my interest. That was impresive & informative. You've still got the hook in & I'm dangling to hear more. Thanks for the sneak peak." ~ Aspiring Author R.F.Taylor: Rianna

"Well done. Chapter One entices the reader craving more. I will look for The Adventures of Monsieur de La Donaree the Musketeer on the web. Keep up the excellent writing..." ~