Early Elizabethan England – Why did England want to send voyages of exploration?

Question 1

Using the video link – start at 8.40 minutes
Match the key feature to the correct detail on the table.
Copy out a correct version of the table. Start by linking the feature and fact.

FactorsDetails
MoneySpain was an enemy of England. The English wanted to attack the Spanish and bring Spanish wealth to England.
TradeEngland was very keen to increase its wealth. The upper classes wanted to make a quick profit.
SpainThe English had relied on the woollen trade with Europe but it had collapsed forcing merchants to find new markets to trade and sell with to make money. The English explored to find new places and started to develop links with new countries, including India.
IndividualsJohn Hawkins became involved in the slave trade. He made a huge profit and other people wanted to become involved.
Spread influence and ideasThe English had many good sailors. They saw the chance to earn a regular wage and take part in an adventure. There were many good sailors such as Drake and Raleigh, who were willing to lead others.
SailorsThe English wanted to spread Protestantism. The English thought it was their duty to civilise other nations and people.

GCSE style question

Explain why voyages of exploration took place during the Elizabethan era. [12 marks]
To attain full marks on this question you need to write three detailed reasons.

Below a candidate has written an excellent first paragraph. They used PEEL to structure their answer making it easy to understand and follow.
Identify where the candidate used the different parts of PEEL. Do not write this down and check your answers at the end.
* Point – opened the paragraph with a big point linked to the question.
* Evidence – used specific evidence.
* Explanation – explained how the evidence links to the question.
* Link – ended the paragraph with a link to the next point.

Click to reveal how the candidate used PEEL to structure their answer:

The main reason why the Elizabethans took part in voyages of exploration was to establish new trade links. Until the 1550s the English had mainly traded with Europe. The main export from England had been wool. It made up 75% of all business and was traded via the Netherlands. This important trade route collapsed when England’s enemy, Spain, closed off Antwerp to English traders. This forced the English to find new markets to sell and trade products with. Funded by the upper classes who were keen to make a quick profit voyages were launched to find new trading routes. They were successful and led to the establishment of links with nations further away, such as India. Success motivated more voyages as investors saw the opportunity for greater profits.

P: The main reason why the Elizabethans took part in voyages of exploration was to establish new trade links.
E: The main export from England had been wool. It made up 75% of all business and was traded via the Netherlands. This important trade route collapsed when England’s enemy, Spain, closed off Antwerp to English traders.
E: This forced the English to find new markets to sell and trade products with. Funded by the upper classes who were keen to make a quick profit voyages were launched to find new trading routes. They were successful and led to the establishment of links with nations further away, such as India.
L: Success motivated more voyages as investors saw the opportunity for greater profits.

GCSE style question

Explain why voyages of exploration took place during the Elizabethan era. [12 marks]
Write the following paragraph.
HINTS:
* The next paragraph would focus on money.
* Use points from the table above – use details from Spain / role of individuals / money
* Follow the PEEL structure.

Well done you have completed your learning for today

Want to learn more?
Grades 9 – 7

Explore the work and ideas of Richard Hakluyt who wrote The Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques, and Discoveries of the English Nation (second edition, 1598–1600). It has been identified as one of the most important collection of English travel writing ever published.
http://www.hakluyt.org/the-edition/

Explore the voyages of John Hawkins
The National Archives:
https://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/pathways/blackhistory/early_times/adventurers.htm
The Royal Museum Greenwich:
https://www.rmg.co.uk/discover/explore/sir-john-hawkins