Portrait of Queen Elizabeth I
Portrait of Queen Elizabeth I

Folger Shakespeare Library

Quick Facts

Significance:
Queen of England during first English expeditions to the New World
Place of Birth:
Palace of Placentia, Greenwich, England
Date of Birth:
September 7, 1533
Place of Death:
Richmond Palace, Surrey, England
Date of Death:
March 24, 1603
Place of Burial:
Westminster Abbey, London

Born the second daughter to King Henry VIII, Elizabeth gained the throne of a religiously divided England in 1558. Ruling with intelligence, the "Virgin Queen" Elizabeth piloted a steady course for England throughout the late 1500s, an era that came to be known after her death as "The Golden Age".

Unlike her predecessors, Elizabeth saw the opportunities that exploration and expansion into the New World provided and secretly aided in several such ventures including Sir Walter Raleigh’s Roanoke voyages.

Last updated: September 28, 2016