By Angus Konstam, Peter Dennis
In 1585, conflict among Spain and Elizabethan England was once all yet inevitable. therefore, Queen Elizabeth's spymaster proposed a pre-emptive strike designed to paralyse Spain's financial system through amazing on the Spanish major - the guts of her in a foreign country empire. The Elizabethan "Sea puppy" Sir Francis Drake used to be chosen to steer this all-important raid. in the course of the summer season of 1585 an excursion was once accrued in Plymouth - a magnificent strength of 21 ships and 1,800 squaddies and sailors. while be aware reached Plymouth that the Queen was once having moment techniques and can name off the raid, Drake hurriedly positioned to sea, sooner than his excursion will be recalled. After first attacking the Canary Islands, he eventually made landfall within the Caribbean previous to Christmas 1585, and he headed instantly for Santo Domingo, the oldest Spanish urban within the New international, and the capital of the island of Hispaniola. Drake was once quickly grasp of the town, which he held to ransom sooner than crusing off in the direction of his new vacation spot - the treasure port of Cartagena. Cartagena was once the place emeralds and gold have been collected for cargo to Spain, and so Drake was hoping for wealthy pickings. regardless of being seriously outnumbered, Drake landed his infantrymen, who stormed town and gained a fantastic victory. Cartagena used to be plundered, then held to ransom sooner than Drake set sail back, the holds of his ships packed with Spanish treasure. not able to raid the seriously defended urban of Havana he as an alternative raided the little Spanish colony at the coast of Florida and then he eventually lower back domestic. Drake's bold raids had ultimately led to the outbreak of the long-expected battle and it'd be the final motion of its sort for a few years as England sought to guard herself opposed to invasion and the Spanish invasion.
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Extra info for The Great Expedition: Sir Francis Drake on the Spanish Main 1585-86 (Raid 17)
Despite being supported by fire from two galleys, the defenders were quickly routed, and the Englishmen poured into the city. Detail of a coloured engraving by Baptista Boazio. Drake and Carleill could mass their assault force for one decisive thrust towards the city. The governor decided to concentrate the bulk of his forces on La Caleta, between the Inner Harbour and the sea. There he ordered a line of entrenchments to be built, to protect the city behind him. The approach to these entrenchments was up the sandy spit, and the final stretch before the Spanish lines would be swept by gunfire from the two galleys patrolling the waters of the Inner Harbour.
There he ordered a line of entrenchments to be built, to protect the city behind him. The approach to these entrenchments was up the sandy spit, and the final stretch before the Spanish lines would be swept by gunfire from the two galleys patrolling the waters of the Inner Harbour. That way the superior numbers of the English could be offset by Spanish firepower and fortifications. Behind the earthworks the city itself was virtually defenceless. Despite being in office since Drake's last visit to Cartagena a decade before, Don Pedro Fernandez had failed to improve the city defences.
As the tide was out they were able to bypass these defences by wading through the surf. 00am, when they were within half a mile of the entrenchments. There La Caleta narrowed to just 150 yards, and spanning it was an earthen wall and parapet, with a ditch in front of it. A battery of four heavy guns covered the approaches, and Carleill could see the two Spanish galleys moving into position to blast him from the flank. Then he spotted the weakness. The Spanish hadn't had time to extend the line of entrenchments beyond the high tide mark on its western or seaward side.
The Great Expedition: Sir Francis Drake on the Spanish Main 1585-86 (Raid 17) by Angus Konstam, Peter Dennis