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English Ships and the Spanish Armada, August 1588

Photo credit: National Maritime Museum

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Notes

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The painting may have been a design for a tapestry, or if not is laid out like one, and is dateable to the years immediately following the event. The composition appears less like a painting than a formal design in a mannered style but no other contemporary image of the Armada conveys a comparable sense of the drama and colour of the confrontation between the two fleets. The emblematic foreground arrangement of a Spanish galleass flanked by two English warships suggests that the picture was intended primarily as a symbol of the Armada campaign as a whole, although it is a symbol edged with satire.

National Maritime Museum

London

  • Date

    late 16th C

  • Medium

    oil on poplar panel

  • Measurements

    112 x 143.5 cm

  • Accession number

    BHC0262

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National Maritime Museum

Romney Road, Greenwich, London, Greater London SE10 9NF England

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