Francis Drake .pdf
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Sir Francis Drake
(1542 - †1596)
Sir Francis Drake was born in 1542 in Tavistock in the Devonshire in a
Protestant family of 12 children. He is the son of a farmer and preacher.
First he was a navigator of a small merchant ship in the 1550's and an officer on
West Africa slave ships. Then he was chosen by Queen Elisabeth in 1577 for an
expedition around the world : he sailed in a ship called the Golden Hind and he was
the first to pass from the Atlantic to the Pacific coast of South Africa.
This map shows the routes of the
Francis Drake's three major expeditions.
Francis Drake was appointed Vice Admiral of the navy that destroyed the
spanish Armada. In 1579 he stopped near the present-day San Francisco to repair the
Golden Hind. He claimed the land for England which is called New Albion then in
1580 he returned to England.
He is famous as a seaman, explorer and a pirate, raiding the Spanish and
helping to defeat the Spanish Armada and also for being a great sailor and a fearless
Francis Drake's ship, the « Golden Hind »
In 1585, Sir Francis Drake married Elizabeth Sydenpham. He died in 1596 of a
tropical disease referred to "the bloody flux" which was probably Yellow Fever.
Some important dates :
1585: Drake travelled to Brazil accompanied by his nephew Richard Hawkins
1586: He visited Sir Walter Raleigh's colony headed by Ralph Lane, finding
disheartened colonists and hostile Indians
1587: He attacked and destroyed the Spanish Fleet at Cadiz - referred to as
'Singeing Philip of Spain's beard'
1588: Spanish Armada of 132 ships sails for England. England's navy consists of
34 ships and 163 armed merchant vessels
1595: Sir Francis Drake embarks on his last voyage to the Caribbean with Sir
John Hawkins and he was sent to attack Spanish settlements in the West Indies but he
also died on the journey home.