English naval expansion under the French threat, 1556-1564

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In the autumn of 1555, after almost a decade of decay, the Marian regime decided to rebuild the English navy. With the encouragement of her Spanish husband, Queen Mary supported the new construction of three large carracks that would assist in the kingdom’s war against the substantial maritime forces of Henri II of France. Even with the potential insurance of Spanish military reinforcements from her husband, the French navy had expanded unprecedentedly under Henri II, forcing England’s maritime resources to their limits. This article will argue that it was these conflicts with France between 1557 and 1564 that forced the Marian and early Elizabethan institutions to endorse a policy of naval expansion.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)640-653
Number of pages14
JournalInternational Journal of Maritime History
Issue number4
Early online date25 Nov 2016
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016

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