Elizabeth I was the Queen of England who ruled from 1558-1603. Elizabeth’s reign achieved great success including great achievements in the arts and an increase in literacy. Overall Elizabeth’s rule established political stability, although Elizabeth battled opposing views, during that time, from people who saw a women unfit to rule and superior to men. Even through these negative views Elizabeth responded by applying strong leadership skills. However, Elizabeth neglected the challenges she faced as an important religious leader. One of the main opposing forces against Elizabeth was the church.
In document 1, John Knox discusses his views on a women ruler saying that women should not be above men because it is all nature and it is against God’s will. John Knox was a Scottish reformer who probably wanted to restrict the line of Stuarts in England. In Document 2, Nicolas Heath also discussed how he doesn’t feel Elizabeth is fit to rule because of his belief that women are not called by God. Another document depicting the views of the church is Document 5, which says that Men should always be the head and women, should submit to them.
Lastly a Roman priest, in document 7, shows his disapproval for the popularity that Elizabeth is gaining from the people. The statement by Edward Rishton is biased because he was most likely angry with Elizabeth for her opposite protestant views. The group minority that was on Elizabeth’s side during her reign were her personal workers and acquaintances that knew her at this time. They were most likely biased towards Elizabeth people they valued her friendship.
John Aylmer, a friend of Elizabeth’s, writes that the people should not challenge or oppose Elizabeth’s rule because she has the help of parliament who are constantly observing her rule. A personal chaplain of Elizabeth, William Tooker, describes her great healing power on people and her use of religious techniques in document 9. Therefore, by describing these ceremonies, Tooker wanted to persuade others of his belief in the power of Elizabeth as head of the church. Elizabeth went against these views by applying strict leadership skills and demonstrating her right to rule.
In document 3, the Act of Supremacy, shows Elizabeth’s ability to get parliaments acknowledgement of her as Supreme Head of the church of England. A speech said by Elizabeth to parliament is shown in document 11. Elizabeth believes that it is her duty to control all matters and she assures the public eye she is capable of all obstacles. Elizabeth tells the people to have faith in her ability to rule and that she will make the best decisions because she cares for her nation as she would a marriage to a husband.
In conclusion the church believed Elizabeth was unfit to rule as based on God’s calling. In contrast, Personal acquaintances of Elizabeth, who valued their friendship, completely believed in Elizabeth’s capability to rule and ability to strengthen England. Elizabeth responded to the negativity by standing up for what she felt was right and enforcing her rule as a Women queen. Elizabeth did all that she could to prove herself within both government and church aspects.