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Encyclopedia > Richard Grenville

Sir Richard Grenville (June 6, 1542September 10, 1591) (sp. var: Greynvile, Greeneville, Greenfield, etc.) was an Elizabethan sailor, explorer, and soldier. He was the grandfather of Sir Richard Grenville, of English Civil War notoriety. June 6 is the 157th day of the year (158th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... Events War resumes between Francis I of France and Emperor Charles V. This time Henry VIII of England is allied to the Emperor, while James V of Scotland and Sultan Suleiman I are allied to the French. ... September 10 is the 253rd day of the Gregorian calendar (254th in leap years). ... Year 1591 was a common year starting on Tuesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar (or a common year starting on Friday of the 10-day slower Julian calendar). ... The Elizabethan Era is the period associated with the reign of Queen Elizabeth I (1558 - 1603) and is often considered to be a golden age in English history. ... Three types of mariners are seen here in the wheelhouse: a master, an able seaman, and a harbour pilot. ... This list of explorers is sorted by surname. ... This article is about a military rank. ... Sir Richard Grenville (or Granville) (1600-1658) was an English Royalist leader during the English Civil War. ... The English Civil War consisted of a series of armed conflicts and political machinations that took place between Parliamentarians (known as Roundheads) and Royalists (known as Cavaliers) between 1642 and 1651. ...


Early life

Grenville was born at Clifton House and brought up at Buckland Abbey in Devon, England. He was a cousin of both Sir Walter Raleigh and Sir Francis Drake, and was present when Theodore Palaeologus, last descendant of the Byzantine emperors, retired to Clifton. He went on to attend at the Inner Temple, aged seventeen years. In 1562, he was in an affray in the Strand in which he ran Robert Bannister through with his sword and left him to die, a crime for which he was pardoned. Buckland Abbey is a 700-year-old house in Yelverton, Devon, England, noted for its connection with Sir Francis Drake and presently in the ownership of the National Trust. ... This page is about the English county, for alternative meanings see Devon (disambiguation). ... Should not be confused with Walter Raleigh (professor). ... Sir Francis Drake, Vice Admiral, (c. ... This is a list of Byzantine Emperors. ...


In pursuit of his military career, Grenville fought against the Turks in Hungary in 1566. In 1569, he arrived in Ireland with Sir Warham St Leger to arrange for the settlement of lands in the barony of Kerricurrihy, which had been mortgaged to St Leger by the Earl of Desmond. At about this time, Grenville also seized lands at Tracton, to the west of Cork harbour, for colonisation, after Sir Peter Carew had asserted his claim to lands in south Leinster. St Leger settled nearby, and Humphrey Gilbert pushed westward from Idrone along the Blackwater. All of these efforts to take land in the south of Ireland led to bitter disputes, which escalated into the first of the Desmond rebelllions, led by James Fitzmaurice Fitzgerald. Gerald Fitzgerald, 15th Earl of Desmond (c. ... Sir Peter Carew (1514–1575) was a Devonshire adventurer, who served during the reign of Queen Elizabeth of England and became a controversial figure in the Tudor re-conquest of Ireland. ... Sir Humphrey Gilbert (c. ... The Desmond Rebellions occurred in the 1569- 1573 and 1579-1583 in Munster in southern Ireland. ... James Fitzmaurice Fitzgerald, a member of the sixteenth century ruling Geraldine dynasty in the province of Munster in Ireland, rebelled against the crown authority of Queen Elizabeth I of England in response to the onset of the Tudor re-conquest of Ireland and was deemed an archtraitor. ...

Grenville had been made sheriff of Cork, and had to stand by as Fitzmaurice, along with the Earl of Clancar, James Fitzedmund Fitzgerald (the Seneschal of Imokilly), Edmund Fitzgibbon (the White Knight) and others, appeared at Tracton, overcame the English defence with pickaxes and killed the entire garrison, other than three English soldiers who were hanged the following day. Fitzmaurice was threatening that Spanish forces would arrive, swearing that this was imminent; having robbed the citizens of Cork, he boasted that he could also take the artillery of the city of Youghal. John Fitzedmund Fitzgerald was the hereditary Seneschal of Imokilly, an Irish nobleman of the Anglo-Norman Fitzgerald dynasty in the province of Munster, who rebelled against the crown during the reign of Queen Elizabeth of England. ... A seneschal was an officer in the houses of important nobles in the Middle Ages. ... Edmund Fitzgibbon (1552?-1608) was an Irish nobleman of the Fitzgerald dynasty, who inherited the Anglo-Norman title of the White Knight and struggled to maintain his loyalty to the crown during the reign of Queen Elizabeth of England. ...

Grenville had just sailed for England, when in June 1569 - around the same time as the detention of the Spanish treasure ships in England - Fitzmaurice camped outside the walls of Waterford and demanded that Grenville's wife and Lady St Leger be handed to him, along with all the English and all prisoners; the citizens refused. Local English farmers were put to the sword, and while Cork was running low on provisions Youghal expected an attack at any minute. The rebellion continued, but Grenville remained in England.

Grenville sided with the Earl of Arundel and the Duke of Norfolk, against the queen's secretary, Sir William Cecil in 1569, but was "undeviatingly Protestant" and went on to arrest the priest, Cuthbert Mayne, at the home of the Tregians in 1577, in consequence of which Mayne was martyred. During this period he played a major role in the transformation of the small fishing port of Bideford in north Devon into a significant trading centre. William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley William Cecil, 1st Baron Burghley (13 September 1520 – 4 August 1598), was an English politician, the chief advisor of Queen Elizabeth I for most of her reign (17 November 1558–24 March 1603), and Lord High Treasurer from 1572. ... Saint Cuthbert Mayne (1543 - November 29, 1577) is a saint in the Roman Catholic Church and one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales. ... Francis Tregian the Elder (1548-1608) was the son of Thomas Tregian of Wolvenden, Cornwall and Catherine Arundell. ...

New World

Grenville had once planned to enter the Pacific by the Magellan Straits, rather than by Labrador, a plan that was eventually executed by Sir Francis Drake when he circumnavigated the world in 1577. In 1585, Grenville was admiral of the seven-strong fleet that brought English settlers to establish a colony on Roanoke Island, off the coast of modern North Carolina in North America. He was heavily criticised by Ralph Lane, the governor of the colony, who referred to Grenville's "intolerable pride and unsatiable ambition". The natives he encountered were hospitable, but the colonists treatment of them was harsh; when one stole a small silver cup, Grenville sacked and burned an entire village, killing its inhabitants. For other meanings of Pacific, see Pacific (disambiguation). ... A true-color Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) satellite image, the entire Strait is visible A map of the Strait of Magellan The Strait of Magellan is a navigable route immediately south of mainland Chile, South America and north of Isla Grande de Tierra del Fuego. ... To circumnavigate a place, such as an island, a continent, or the Earth is to travel all the way around it by boat or ship. ... Roanoke Island is an island in Dare County near the coast of North Carolina, United States. ... Official language(s) English Capital Raleigh Largest city Charlotte Area  Ranked 28th  - Total 53,865 sq mi (139,509 km²)  - Width 150 miles (240 km)  - Length 560[1] miles (901 km)  - % water 9. ... Sir Ralph Lane (~1530 - 1603) was an English explorer of the Elizabethan era. ...

In 1586 Grenville returned to Roanoke to find that the surviving colonists had shipped out with Drake, and on the return voyage he raided various towns in the Azores Islands. At about this time, a description was given of his behaviour while dining with Spanish captains:

He would carouse three or four glasses of wine, and in a bravery take the glasses between his teeth and crash them in pieces and swallow them down, so that often the blood ran out of his mouth without any harm at all unto him.[1]

Grenville was denied a command under Drake in the successful raid on Cadiz in 1587, and contented himself with organising the defences of Devon and Cornwall in preparation for the arrival of the Spanish Armada the following year. He was commissioned, with Sir Walter Raleigh to keep watch at sea on the approaches to Ireland, and after the repulse of the invasion attempt he returned to Munster to arrange the estate granted to him under the plantation of the province. After the suppression of the Second Desmond Rebellion in 1583, he had purchased land there - some 24,000 acres (97 km²) in Kinalmeaky - and brought settlers over, but his renewed efforts yielded little success and he returned to England late in 1590. Combatants England Dutch Republic Spain Portugal Commanders Charles Howard Francis Drake Duke of Medina Sidonia Strength 34 warships 163 armed merchant vessels 22 galleons 108 armed merchant vessels Casualties 50–100 dead[1] ~400 wounded 600 dead, 800 wounded,[2] 397 captured, 4 merchant ships sunk or captured The Spanish... Should not be confused with Walter Raleigh (professor). ... Plantations in 16th and 17th century Ireland involved the seizure of land owned by the native Irish and granting of it to colonists (planters) from Britain. ... The Second Desmond rebellion was the more significant and widespread of the two Desmond Rebellions launched by the Fitzgerald dynasty of the Desmond area of Munster, Ireland in the 1560s. ...

Final command

Grenville was appointed vice-admiral of the fleet under Thomas Howard, and was charged with maintaining a squadron at the Azores to waylay the treasure fleets of the Spanish. He took command of HMS Revenge, a galleon considered to be a masterpiece of naval construction. Admiral Thomas Howard, 1st Earl of Suffolk (24 August 1561-28 May 1626) was a son of Thomas Howard, 4th Duke of Norfolk by his second wife Hon. ... HMS Revenge, built at a cost of £4,000 at the Royal Dockyard of Deptford in 1577 by Mathew Baker, Master Shipwright, was to usher in a new style of ship building that would revolutionize naval warfare for the next three hundred years. ...

At Flores the English fleet was surprised by a larger squadron, sent by Philip II of Spain. Howard retreated, but Grenville faced the fifty three ships with a crew depleted in number by 95, owing to sickness on shore; he may have had an opportunity of escape, but chose to confront the far superior force. For 12 hours his crew fought off the Spanish, causing heavy damage to fifteen galleons; ultimately, Grenville wished to blow up the ship, but the crew surrendered, and he died several days later of his wounds. Revenge along with 16 Spanish ships sank during a cyclone soon after. Philip II (Spanish: Felipe II de Habsburgo; Portuguese: Filipe I) (May 21, 1527 – September 13, 1598) was the first official King of Spain from 1556 until 1598, King of Naples and Sicily from 1554 until 1598, King consort of England (as husband of Mary I) from 1554 to 1558, Lord...


Elizabeth I redirects here. ... Sir Francis Drake, Vice Admiral, (c. ... Alfred, Lord Tennyson Alfred Tennyson, 1st Baron Tennyson (6 August 1809 – 6 October 1892) was Poet Laureate of the United Kingdom and is one of the most popular English poets. ... Al Stewart (born Alastair Ian Stewart on September 5, 1945, Glasgow, Scotland), is a British singer-songwriter and musician. ... The House System is a traditional feature of British schools, similar to the collegiate system of a university. ... A public school, in current English, Welsh and Northern Ireland usage, is a (usually) prestigious independent school, for children usually between the ages of 11 or 13 and 18, which charges fees and is not financed by the state. ... Churchers College is an English public school - that is, an independent, fee-paying school which is a member of the Headmasters and Headmistresses Conference (HMC). ... Dulwich New College buildings. ... Queen Elizabeths High School is an 11-18 co-educational grammar school, based in Gainsborough in northern Lincolnshire. ...


  • Rowse, A. L.. Sir Richard Grenville of the Revenge (London, 1937).
  • Peter Earle The Last Fight of the Revenge (London, 2004) ISBN 0-413-77484-8
  • Richard Bagwell, Ireland under the Tudors 3 vols. (London, 1885–1890).
  • Nicholas P. Canny The Elizabethan Conquest of Ireland: a Pattern Established, 1565–76 (London, 1976). ISBN 0-85527-034-9.
  • Cyril Falls Elizabeth's Irish Wars (1950; reprint London, 1996). ISBN 0-09-477220-7.
  • Dictionary of National Biography 22 vols. (London, 1921–1922).
Honorary titles
Preceded by
Sir John Chamond
Custos Rotulorum of Cornwall
Succeeded by
Sir John Arundell

  Results from FactBites:
Richard Grenville - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia (268 words)
Grenville was a cousin of both Sir Walter Raleigh and Sir Francis Drake, and grandfather of Sir Richard Grenville, of English Civil War notoriety.
Grenville had planned to circumnavigate the globe in the late 1570s, but Queen Elizabeth gave the honour to Sir Francis Drake instead.
The last and fatal fight of Grenville and the Revenge is commemorated in a poem by Alfred Tennyson ("The Revenge") and a song by Al Stewart ("Lord Grenville").
  More results at FactBites »



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