My history hero: Elizabeth I (1533-1603)

"More than any other person, Elizabeth is responsible for the England we know today. She was a very strong, determined leader": Former Conservative party leader Michael Howard chooses Elizabeth I

Elizabeth I, shown in a portrait commemorating victory over the Armada. (Photo by Photo 12/UIG via Getty Images)

This article was first published in the August 2018 edition of BBC History Magazine

Elizabeth I was queen of England from 1558 until her death. The daughter of Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, the childless Virgin Queen was the last of the Tudors. One of her first acts as queen was the establishment of an English Protestant church. She also had Mary, Queen of Scots imprisoned and executed. In 1570 the pope excommunicated her, a reflection of the religious tensions of the era.

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