“a rock”: Between Peace and Conflict—An Intriguing Queen, 1568–1570
La Mothe Fénélon played a pivotal role in reassuring the French royal family that Elizabeth remained loyal to the Anglo-French alliance and wished to preserve good relations with them. Moreover, he defended her legitimacy and portrayed her as at least the equal of any other European monarch, regardless of gender. Nevertheless, the image of a more defiant and warlike queen gradually emerged in his reports as well as Catherine’s and Charles IX of France’s responses. All three had no doubt that she was prepared to defend her interests both inside and outside the borders of her realm by asserting her royal authority right across the European political scene, if necessary.