Ireland had in theory been part of the official English crown since 1541 but their power had mostly been based on local traditions and customs, rather that abiding by the English law. Elizabeth wanted to strengthen the control that she had over Ireland to ensure national security, especially as England moved towards Protestantism and Ireland remained catholic. She knew this could cause potential threats. One will explain the attitudes that England had towards the Irish and the link between how this affected the threats that Elizabeth faced both domestically and from abroad.
1) explain, using relevant sources of information, what Elizabethan attitudes were like towards the Irish people?
The Elizabethans thought of the Irish to be less then human, this attitude was particularly expressed by an contemporary English observer who said ' ....are more uncivil, more uncleanly, more barbarous in their customs and demeanours than in any part of the world known'. This shows how their habits and customs had been critiqued and used against them in a negative nature. Furthermore, Ireland assumed England's new government was going to be ineffective like the last which held as an excuse for the governments rigour ' the Irish live like beasts' emphasising how they didn't see the Irish as humans but as animals. Therefore allowing them to justify their reasons for wanting to sort out Ireland. It also shows that Elizabeth knew what Ireland thought of her and how they somewhat undermined her authority by their assumptions, therefore influencing how she treated the Irish back.
England also believed that Ireland was not worthy to go to war with and almost suggested that they could be easily beaten in any war or rebellion. In the 1570s the Earl of Leicester said ' temporising wars are to be used with civil and expert men, but savages and those rural rascals are only by force and fear to be vanquished'. This shows an attitude that England should only go to war with countries...
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