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Sir Francis Drake Facts

Sir Francis Drake

Facts about Sir Francis Drake

Biography Summary:
Sir Francis Drake (1540 - 1596) was famous for finishing a game of bowls, whilst waiting for the weather conditions to improve, before setting sail, to destroy the Spanish Armada.

He was also known for sailing around the world in the ship he renamed, the Golden Hind, and he was knighted on this vessel, by the Queen, in 1581.

A firm favorite of Queen Elizabeth he bought her many riches from his travels around the globe. So successful was he at raiding the Spanish treasure ships, King Philip II of Spain put out a reward of 20,000 ducats or his life, which would be the equivalent of US$6.5m or £4m.

Sir Francis Drake Fact Sheet: Who was Sir Francis Drake? The following short biography and fact sheet provides interesting facts about the life, times and history of Sir Francis Drake.

Sir Francis Drake Fact File Biography: Lifespan: 1540 - 1596 *** Full Name: Sir Francis Drake *** Nickname:- El Draque and Draco *** Occupation: English Sea Captain, Privateer, Navigator, Politician and Slaver in the Elizabethan Era *** Date of Birth: Sir Francis Drake was born in 1540 *** Place of Birth: Sir Francis Drake was born in Tavistock, Devon, England *** Family background: His father was Edmond Drake a farmer of the Protestant faith and his mother was Mary Mylwaye *** Early life and childhood: He grew up in a time when religious persecution was rife. His father moved the family from Dorset to Kent where his father managed to get an appointment to minister, once he was ordained as a deacon and made vicar of Upnor Church, to the King’s Navy *** Education: Sir Francis Drake would have been educated as befitted his station ***

Sir Francis Drake Fact 1: Sir Francis Drake was born in 1540 and during the 16th century period in history when Portugal and Spain were exploring the oceans of the world and colonizing new lands.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 2: His father apprenticed Drake to his neighbor, a merchant seaman, who taught Francis all he needed to know about seamanship, and it was he who left Drake his first sailing vessel.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 3: In 1569 he married Mary Newman and after twelve years of marriage she died. He later married Elizabeth Sydenham the daughter of the High Sheriff of Somerset, Sir George Sydenham. No children were born of Drake with either of his wives.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 4: He made his first voyage to American when he was twenty three years of age. The voyage was made with his second cousin, Sir John Hawkins.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 5: Several times Drake would be fortunate enough to capture treasure from the Spanish both at sea and on land. The first occasion he was found to be wounded and his crew withdrew leaving the treasure to save his life.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 6: The next occasion would be on land, they snagged the treasure and made for their boats only to find their boats gone. They buried the treasure on the beach and hastily made a raft to carry volunteers back to his flagship.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 7: When they arrived looked so bedraggle, drake could resist not the teasing of his crew and looked downcast when he boarded his ship. When asked what had happened he began to laugh and pulled the evidence of their cache, a gold necklace from his neck, to show his crew. They returned to England in August of 1573.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 8: On his next outing he captured several Spanish treasure ships whose cache of treasure was enormous.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 9: In his search for further treasure ships he travelled North and made land on the coast of what would be California and claimed the land in the name of the Holy Trinity and of the English Crown.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 10: Having left a small party of his crew to semi colonize the area he set off to catch the trade winds to take him across the Pacific.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 11: Eventually he rounded the Cape of Good Hope and on September 26th 1580 he made landfall in Plymouth with a cargo of treasure and spices.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 12: He would be hailed as the first Englishman to circumnavigate the globe.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 13: All of drakes written material from the voyage was confiscated by the Queen and he and his crew on pain of death if they breathed a word of the ventures, she wished to keep their travels secret from the Spanish.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 14: In 1581, aboard the decks of the Golden Hind, Drake was awarded a knighthood by Queen Elizabeth.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 15: In September of 1581 he became a member of Parliament.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 16: With war already declared by Phillip II, Drake was tasked with a pre-emptive strike against the Spanish colonies he began with Vigo in Spain, plundering Santiago in Cape Verde islands, attacked the port of Santo Domingo and would capture the city of Cartagena de Indias and on his way home raided San Augustine in Spanish Florida.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 17: It was these acts that prompted Philip to order the invasion of England.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 18: Drake became Vice Admiral of the English fleet. Having pursued the Spanish up the English Channel as dark fell, Drake’s vessel had been the one carrying a lantern for the English ships to follow. In order to capture one of the Spanish vessels, known to be carry funds being transported to pay for soldiers waiting in the Low Countries to assist Spain in the invasion, Drake extinguished his lantern, putting the fleet in chaos but managing to capture the vessel he had pursued.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 19: With the Spanish fleet in Calais, Drake organized fire ships be prepared and sent in amongst the Spanish fleet causing them to scatter and ultimately the failure of the Spanish invasion.

Sir Francis Drake Fact 20: Although he continued his career into his fifties Sir Francis Drake died on January 27th 1596 of dysentery while at anchor off of the coast of Portobelo in Panama. They were scouting Spanish treasure ships but when Drake died, his fleet withdrew. He had requested a burial at sea dressed in his full armor. His wished complied with, his body was placed in a lead coffin and put overboard near Portobelo.

Influence and Legacy: There are various legendary stories that have built up around what may or may not have happened to Drake. The burying of treasure has led to various rumors of the years and as far as him playing bowls on the eve of the Spanish invasion, it is thought that perhaps, because the weather conditions were so bad at the time, he was actually unable to take to his ship and it was suggested he was otherwise occupied.

Facts about Sir Francis Drake for Kids:
The above short facts detail interesting information about the life, milestones, history and key events that occurred during the life of this famous character, Sir Francis Drake. A fast, simple way to present a short biography of Sir Francis Drake with important dates and info that provides details such as the date of birth (birthday), place of birth, education, family, work and career.

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