2 The Anglo–Spanish War (1585–1604) was an intermittent conflict, punctuated by large, widely separated battles between the kingdoms of Spain and England.
3 The friction began when Mary I of England, the wife of the Philip II of Spain, a member of the Habsburg family, failed to produce an heir to the English throne. The subsequent queen of England, Elizabeth I, was less amenable to Philip's will than Mary had been.The shooting started after the English sent a military expedition to the Netherlands in support of the Estates General in the latter's resistance to Habsburg rule. The English then enjoyed victories at Cádiz in 1587 and over the Spanish Armada in 1588, but thereafter steadily lost the initiative.
4 CausesIn the 1560s, Philip II of Spain sought to frustrate English crown policy for both religious and commercial reasons. The Protestant Elizabeth I of England had antagonised Roman Catholics by making attendance at Church of England services compulsory. The English also tended to support the protestant.
5 The activities of English privateers, (considered pirates by the Spanish) on the Spanish Main and in the Atlantic, were a severe drain on the Spanish treasury. The English trans-Atlantic slave trade - started by Sir John Hawkins in gained royal support, even though the Spanish government complained that Hawkins' trade with their colonies in the West Indies was a smuggling racket.In September 1568, a slaving expedition led by Hawkins and Sir Francis Drake was surprised by the Spanish, and several ships were sunk, at San Juan de Ulúa, near Veracruz, Mexico. This engagement soured Anglo-Spanish relations, and in the following year the English detained several treasure ships sent by the Spanish to supply their army in the Netherlands. Drake and Hawkins, amongst others, intensified their privateering as a way to break the Spanish monopoly on Atlantic trade.
6 OutbreakWar broke out in Drake sailed for the West Indies and sacked Santo Domingo, Cartagena de Indias, and San Agustín in Florida. England joined the Eighty Years' War on the side of the Dutch Protestant United Provinces, led in revolt by William the Silent, and against Spain. Philip II planned an invasion of England, but in April 1587 his preparations suffered a setback when Drake burned 37 Spanish ships in harbour at Cádiz. In the same year, the execution of Mary I of Scotland on 28 February outraged Catholics in Europe, and her claim on the English throne passed (by her own deed of will) to Philip. On 29 July, he obtained Papal authority to overthrow Elizabeth, who had been excommunicated by Pope Pius V, and place whomever he chose on the throne of England.
8 Spanish ArmadaThe Armada engagement revolutionised naval warfare and provided valuable seafaring experience for English oceanic mariners. Furthermore, the Armada's defeat enabled the English to persist in their privateering against the Spanish and continue sending troops to assist Philip II's enemies in the Netherlands and France.
9 English ArmadaThe war with the Spaniards continued to be fought after the Armada's defeat; in 1589 it was England's turn to attempt an invasion and to be repelled by Spain. This expedition was under Drake, in command of the ships, and Sir John Norreys (Norris) ( ) in command of the troops. They were assigned several objectives. The first being to seek out and destroy the surviving ships of the 1588 Armada in the ports of northern Spain. The second was to make a landing at Lisbon, to raise a revolt there against Philip II, then King of Portugal as well as Spain, and to supplant him with the Prior of Crato- the last surviving heir of the Aviz dynasty. The third objective was to occupy the Azores, if possible.
10 The war was ended with a peace treaty, which was negotiated between Spain's Philip III and the new, Scottish king of England James I and signed in 1604.
11 EffectsThe continuing, increasingly unsuccessful war with Spain delayed English settlement in North America until the early Stuart period. This enabled Spain to consolidate its still vulnerable New World empire which was to last another two centuries. Spain had been able to effectively deny the Atlantic sea lanes to English colonial efforts until England had agreed to most Spanish conditions. However England remained true to the Protestant revolution.