Day 10 (02:42)
The English Navy had pursued the Spanish Armada from Plymouth Harbor to the Isle of Wight. On August 7, 1588, the Armada anchored at Calais to meet the Spanish army. Lord Burghley and Sir Francis Walsingham informed Elizabeth of the threat.
Armada Master Plan (01:59)
In Madrid, Philip received unreliable reports of events in the English Channel. The Spanish planned to unite army and navy to invade England.
Response to Danger (04:26)
Lord High Admiral Charles Howard realized that the Spanish army and Armada were in contact. English cannons and ship technology were superior but lacked ammunition. Elizabeth moved her court from Richmond Palace to London, where she could be better defended.
Communication Challenges (03:56)
The Duke of Medina Sidonia and Admiral Juan Martinez de Recalde had disagreed on the Armada's strategy. News came that the Duke of Parma would not be able to join forces for days. Philip finally realized the logistical error.
Fire Ship Attack (04:38)
Both the English and Spanish believed the other side had the strategic advantage. Howard and Sir Francis Drake decided to strike by floating burning vessels into the anchored Armada. Sidonia ordered anchors cut; Spanish ships scattered.
Day 11 (03:52)
On August 8, 1588, thirty additional ships with ammunition joined the English fleet. Hear details of the Battle of Gravelines.
Battle of Gravelines Technology (06:01)
English cannons fired at a faster rate than the Spanish. A model demonstrates cannonball damage to Armada ships and sailors; learn about complications from barber surgeon amputations. Running out of ammunition, the English called off the attack before a decisive victory.
Day 12 (05:50)
On August 9, 1588, the damaged Armada remained a threat but Elizabeth refused to increase military defense spending. The wind blew the Armada north; recently discovered documents show Recalde wanted to regroup but Sidonia decided to return to Spain via Ireland
English Victory (04:52)
On August 18, 1588, Elizabeth made a public appearance at Tilbury Fort celebrating the Armada's defeat. Hear excerpts of her speech promoting a Protestant warrior queen myth.
Unfair Treatment (02:27)
Elizabeth shunned the English Navy, despite their having defeated the Armada. She criticized commanders for not having looted the Spanish ships and refused to aid sailors suffering typhus. This type of policy was not unusual for 16th century rulers.
Fate of the Armada (05:03)
On August 31, 1588, Philip finally received news that the Spanish fleet had failed—despite his faith in God. Storms destroyed many ships on Scotland and Ireland. Recalde sent Philip his account before dying of typhus, hoping to incriminate Sidonia.
Armada Portrait (02:56)
Philip's health declined after the Armada's defeat; he sent two more unsuccessful fleets against Elizabeth. A painting depicts her as a youthful queen before a victorious English fleet—establishing the national identity. Historians discuss the legacy of England’s victory.
Credits: Armada: The Untold Story—End Game (00:41)
Credits: Armada: The Untold Story—End Game
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