Raleigh and the British Empire

By David B. Quinn | Go to book overview

Chapter One Beginnings

ABOUT 1552 -- for a precise birth-date has yet to be found for him -- Walter Raleigh was born, the fourth son of Walter Raleigh of Fardel, near Plymouth. His father was one of the lesser Devon gentry, well connected but poor. Walter was born at Hayes Barton, a few miles from Budleigh Salterton Bay, to which his father had moved over twenty years before. His mother, Katherine Champernoun, was a member of another family of Devonshire gentry. She had married Otho Gilbert of Compton and, after his death in 1547, had become the third wife of the elder Walter Raleigh. She was the mother of five men, Sir John, Sir Humphrey and Adrian Gilbert, and Sir Walter and Sir Carew Raleigh, all actively associated in English overseas expansion.

Raleigh was born at a significant time. For nearly a century successive English governments, under Yorkist and Tudor kings, had been endeavouring to build a compact and centralized state out of the broken-down feudalism of the fifteenth century. It was only under Henry VIII that northern England, Wales and the Welsh

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Raleigh and the British Empire
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • A General Introduction to the Series v
  • Contents ix
  • Illustrations x
  • Introduction xi
  • Chapter One - Beginnings 1
  • Chapter Two - New Worlds 12
  • Chapter Three - The English Approach to America 47
  • Chapter Four - Lost Colonies 97
  • Chapter Five - An Irish Plantation 129
  • Chapter Six - The Beautiful Empire 162
  • Chapter Seven - The Refounding of Virginia 209
  • Chapter Eight - Guiana Gamble 240
  • Note on Further Reading 272
  • Index 273
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