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Title: Scotland and Philip II, 1580-1598: politics,religion, diplomancy and lobbying.
Author: Saenz Cambra, Concepcion
ISNI:       0000 0000 3919 5475
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 2003
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This thesis examines the political, diplomatic and religious relations between Spain and Scotland, during the last two decades of Philip II of Spain's life. Until 1566-68, Spain and England conserved peaceful relations despite a few minor incidents. Philip II abstained from favouring the Catholic Mary Stewart, a Guise, instead of Elizabeth. If he had supported her, he would have risked dangerously increasing France's influence. But, with the English support of the rebels in the Netherlands and the English attacks on the Spanish Atlantic fleet, Philip considered the suggestion advocated by lobbyists from Britain that he should assault England through its traditional enemy and `back gate' Scotland. The Spanish monarch, obsessively devoted to his faith, was tremendously concerned with restoring Roman Catholicism to the British Isles; however, he also knew that instability inside the Isle could mean the end of English aid to the rebels in the Netherlands and a cessation of the English piracy and privateering; moreover, Scotland could have been used as a secure base in the North Sea. This Spanish interest was welcomed in the realm of Scotland not only by the many discontents, some Catholics, some not, who saw in Spain a new `El Dorado' - the source of money, troops and employment. Religion often produced clear loyalties, as for example, the collaborations of the earls of Huntly, Angus and Errol with Spain, i. e. their involvement in the `Spanish Blanks' in 1593. But other loyalties were often confusing. For example, Francis Stewart, the earl of Bothwell, a Protestant by education, who made brief collaborations with Spain. Even in the Scottish court, there was a considerable political debate; while Mary was still prisoner, James VI was swaying between Spain and England, looking for money and an assurance of his succession to the English throne after Queen Elizabeth's death. The period between 1580 and 1588 was characterized by the Jesuit mission to Scotland and the preparations for the Spanish Armada of 1588. In the early 1580s, the Pope gave permission for a Jesuit mission, financed by Spain, to be sent to Scotland to restore the `true' faith, which functioned until 1583, when it became clear that only an armed invasion would eliminate Protestantism from the Isle. Despite the failure of the Armada, its purpose was not forgotten by Philip II nor the Scots. The plan of an invasion through Scotland was not dismissed, but was waiting for a `more propitious time. ' The characteristic of this period of ten years, between the Armada and the death of Philip II of Spain in 1598, was the unrealistic plans for invasions being hatched in Spain, and the divisions between those who supported a Spanish or a Scottish candidature for the English throne, and the fear of a Spanish- Catholic conspiracy in the realm. Nevertheless, everything was over after the death of Philip II. While Spain was ruined and suffocating with problems, James VI was reinforcing his alliance with Elizabeth I, and was assuring his accession to the English throne. The hope of restoration of the Catholic faith in the Isle was only kept by William and Hugh Sempill; now the only hope of the Scottish Catholics was the Scots College in Madrid. This study is based principally on manuscript sources, many of them rarely and some of them never previously used. Eleven archives were used for this work: Archivo General de Simancas, Valladolid; Biblioteca Nacional de Espana, Madrid; Nacional Library of Scotland, Edinburgh; Public Record Office, London; the British Library, London; Library of the Nacional Maritime Museum, Greenwich; Cambridge University Library, Cambridge; Archivio di Statu Firenze, Mediceo del Principato; and the Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University Library, Utah.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available