Queen Elizabeth I

Queen Elizabeth I

Mary Queen of Scots

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About Her

Living... royally, in England in the mid 16th century.

Profession... Queen of England. Already a few years into her reign, Elizabeth has established a commanding authority. To protect her position, she’s so far decided to remain single, but that calls into question the future of the monarchy. If Elizabeth doesn’t produce an heir, who will reign after her?

Interests... Quilling—the art of rolling and shaping elaborate designs out of strips of paper.

Relationship Status... single, kind of. Fearing that any man she weds will usurp her power, Elizabeth chooses not to marry. Privately, however, she carries out a loving romantic relationship with her statesman and advisor Robert Dudley.

Challenge... protecting the Crown. Though the English consider Elizabeth to be their rightful queen, her cousin Mary, Queen of Scots believes she has a claim to the throne as well. As a compromise, young Mary suggests that Elizabeth simply name her as her successor. It’s a reasonable idea—especially if Elizabeth remains childless—however, the fact that Mary is a Catholic complicates things. England is a Protestant nation, and Elizabeth and her advisors want to keep it that way. Their religious differences are a major wedge between these otherwise similar “sister” monarchs.

Personality... publicly powerful but privately insecure. As a political negotiator and public figure, Elizabeth is a force to be reckoned with. To combat the sexism of her era, Elizabeth compensates by being twice as commanding. As she once exclaims to an advisor, “You have the boldness to doubt my judgement? You had better question yours.” In her private life, however, Elizabeth isn’t quite as confident. She has her own insecurities about her political decisions, her beauty, and her decision not to marry or have children. Serving as Queen is a lonely position that few can understand. Elizabeth is an anxious raw nerve whose battle armor is white face paint and a bright red wig.

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