In May 1588 Catholic king Phillip of Spain sent his Spanish Armada to attack England. Relations between these two superpowers have been getting gradually worse. Elizabeth had been encouraging attacks on Spanish to and from the new world. She had also been helping Spain’s enemies in the Netherlands. However, the final straw for Spain was when she executed Mary Queen of Scots (a Catholic Queen) and had a papal bull written against her. King Phillip felt it was his duty as a Catholic to punish her. In spite of being a rich and powerful nation Elisabeth managed to defeat the Spanish before they even set foot on English soil. What went wrong? Why did they fail?
Firstly, the Spanish were dogged with bad luck from the very beginning. The weather, which was stormy, seemed to be against them. Their ships were damaged and to stop at the nearest port, Coruna, to be repaired. This delayed their journey and had detrimental effect on Spanish morale. This wasn’t, of course the only reason The Armada failed, but the poor beginning did seem to be a bad omen for the next series of events.
The Spanish made a series of mistakes witch lead to their downfall one of their first mistakes was their choice of commander, the Duke of Medina Sidonia. He was chosen for his prestige rather than his experience. The Duke was simply not the right man for the job. His planning was atrocious, for example, he started the journey with not enough accurate maps and an insufficient amount of food for the crew. Furthermore his crew was compromised of priests and soldiers instead of experienced sailors like the English had. This man, who spent much of the journey in his cabin being seasick, was pitched against such an experienced, noteworthy sailor as Sir Francis Drake and court favorite Admiral Howard. Moreover, the Spanish ships were large and bulky and this made them difficult to maneuver, especially in windy conditions of the English Channel. This rendered them