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Elfinspell Introduction to
Sir Walter Raleigh's Report
of the Last Sea-Fight of the Revenge

After the glorious victory of the defeat of the Spanish Armada by the Elizabethan Navy, with its brave and chivalrous knights exemplified, it is not surprising that no mention in the history books is made of the fate of one of its key ships, The Revenge.

True heroism entails reporting the inglorious acts of one's own countrymen. Sir Walter Raleigh has done it in this report, A Report of the Truth Concerning the Last Sea-Fight of the Revenge. Like Froissart, he includes enough flattery to keep his head, for the moment, but — unlike Froissart — his portrayal was still so shocking that this disgraceful action by the rest of the English fleet has been buried 'fathoms deep' in the historical unconscious. Because of it, a lot of subsequent derogation by apologists of Sir Richard Grenville followed to whitewash it, in an attempt to justify the cowardice of a large contingent of Her Majesty's Navy.

The Original text is here and a modernized version is here.

Copyright © 2005 by Susan Rhoads


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