Elizabeth I was the last English monarch truly to rule the nation; she inherited a weak and divided kingdom yet relentlessly fashioned it into a major world power, and decisively defeated the mightiest invasion fleet ever to approach our shores. Her relationships with the key men in the kingdom were vital to the success of her reign. Her greatest attributes were a shrewd judgement of human nature coupled with the unerring ability to choose and motivate men. During a long and glorious reign, she surrounded herself with the ablest, most energetic and fearless minds in the kingdom. Her retinue wa.