Queen Elizabeth I In The Doubt Of Future Foes

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Queen Elizabeth I ruled England during a turbulent time in its history. She was beset on all sides by those who wished to take her throne for themselves, whether it be through marriage or outright treason. With these threats, as well as the unstable political atmosphere across much of Europe, Elizabeth I could not afford to be seen as weak. This is why she distanced herself from the stereotypes of women at the time. She painted herself as a masculine figure to give herself an aura of strength that would deter potential usurpers. Elizabeth I tends to describe herself as a prince throughout her speeches. As she speaks to the soldiers assembled in Tilbury, she assures them, “I know already for your forwardness you have deserved rewards and crowns, and we do assure you in the word of a prince, they shall be duly paid to you,” (Elizabeth I 305). Why she does this can be linked to the culture of the time. She is the sovereign queen of a nation in a time where women are seen as unfit to rule. She is presenting a front of masculinity to…show more content…
In her poem The Doubt of Future Foes, Elizabeth I threatens Mary Queen of Scots by saying, “My rusty sword through rest shall first his edge employ/ To poll their tops that seek such change or/ gape for future joy,” (14-17). Phrasing her threat to quash Mary’s rebellion in such a way presents Elizabeth I as a warrior. She does this once again during her speech “To the Troops at Tilbury” by presenting herself as a warrior. She tells her men “…to which, rather than any dishonor shall grow by me, I myself will take up arms,” (Elizabeth I 305). She tells her men that she will sooner pick up arms and fight against the invaders than watch them succeed. This is not only meant to bolster her men’s morale, but also to assure them that she isn’t a swooning noblewoman who will bend to the will of the
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