Sir Francis Drake was a pirate, sea captain, explorer, and slave trader. The British and the Spanish were at war, but Britain’s empire couldn’t yet compare to the Spanish, so they encouraged piracy, to weaken the Spanish Empire. Sir Francis Drake was the most famous of all these pirates. After the fall of Rome no European empire’s territory reached further than Europe itself, that is, until the 16th century. The Spanish and Portuguese start exploring and colonising new land. In this century Spain developed their seafaring expertise, and used it to expand their empire to the Americas.
1. The Sea Dog’s Bounty
Drake was also known as Britain’s most feared “Sea Dog”. He was hated by the Spanish, and Philip II, King of Spain, put a bounty on his head worth the equivalent of millions in modern day currency. This bounty would have made him a target for thousands, but nobody ever managed to kill him. The bounty was put on his head in 1570, and died of natural causes in 1586.