Francis Drake

Server Costs Fundraiser 2024

Help our mission to provide free history education to the world! Please donate and contribute to covering our server costs in 2024. With your support, millions of people learn about history entirely for free every month.
$2309 / $18000

Definition

Sir Francis Drake (c. 1540-1596 CE) was an English mariner, privateer and explorer who in 1588 CE helped defeat the Spanish Armada of Philip II of Spain (r. 1556-1598 CE) which attempted to invade the kingdom of Elizabeth I of England (r. 1558-1603 CE). Roaming the Atlantic and Caribbean capturing their treasure ships, the Spanish called Drake 'El Draque' ('the Dragon'). Partial to combining exploration with piracy, Drake famously circumnavigated the globe in his ship the Golden Hind between 1577 and 1580 CE. One of England's most celebrated seafarers and idolised in his own lifetime, Drake was witty but sly, generous yet cruel, both audacious and reckless, fiercely patriotic and almost always lucky - in short, the archetypal Elizabethan hero. He died of dysentery in 1596 CE on an expedition to raid the Spanish Main one last time.

More about: Francis Drake

Timeline

Membership