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  Famous men and women at the National Archives
 Drake home from trip round world 1580
 
 Mary Queen of Scots beheaded 1587
 
 Drake singes king's beard 1587
 
 Spanish Armada defeated 1588 Letter from Drake describing the Armada campaign
National Archives, Kew
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Elizabeth is depicted in a legal document c. 1589
 
  1590 Illuminated 'plea roll' portrait of Elizabeth I
National Archives, Kew
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 Shakespeare shows his paces with Richard III 1592
 
Elizabeth writes her last known letter 1603 The last known letter of Elizabeth I, 1603
National Archives, Kew
 
 Queen Elizabeth dies in Richmond Palace 1603
 
Shakespeare features in a list of actors c. 1604 List of the King's Men in 1604, including Shakespeare
National Archives, Kew
 
 Gunpowder Plot damages Catholic cause 1605 Confession of Guy Fawkes in 1605
National Archives, Kew
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 Globe burns during Shakespeare's last play 1613
 
 Shakespeare dies c. 1616 Shakespeare's Will
National Archives, Kew
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 Milton's Lycidas 1637
 
Milton sues to recover a debt c. 1654 Inventory of a gentleman taken to court by John Milton, 1654
National Archives, Kew
 
 10 for Paradise Lost 1667
 
Defoe petitions to avoid a gaol sentence c. 1703 Letter from Daniel Defoe in 1703
National Archives, Kew
 
 Crusoe meets Man Friday 1719
 
Burlington puts in design for Houses of Parliament c. 1733 Design by Burlington for new Houses of Parliament in 1733
National Archives, Kew
 
 Dick Turpin in tangle with the law c. 1739 Indictment of Dick Turpin for stealing a black mare in 1739
National Archives, Kew
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 Dick Turpin hanged in York 1739
 
 Captain Cook sails for Pacific 1768 Letter from Captain Cook in preparation for his first voyage
National Archives, Kew
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 Nelson dies at Trafalgar 1805 The boat carrying Nelson's coffin
National Archives, Kew
 
 Sense and Sensibility 1811
 
Jane Austen dies c. 1817
 
  1817 Jane Austen's will
National Archives, Kew
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 18-year-old girl on British throne 1837
 
 Victoria marries Albert 1840
 
 Income tax reintroduced in Britain c. 1842 Victoria and Albert pay income tax in a Punch cartoon of 1842
National Archives, Kew
 
 Albert supports Great Exhibition c. 1849 Letter from Prince Albert in 1849, proposing the Great Exhibition
National Archives, Kew
 
 Six million visitors to Great Exhibition 1851
 
 The ten yearly census is taken c. 1851 Queen Victoria's census return at Buckingham Palace in 1851
National Archives, Kew
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 Great Expectations 1861
 
 Albert dies of typhoid 1861
 
Dickens writes to the prime minister c. 1862 Letter from Charles Dickens to Lord Palmerston in 1862
National Archives, Kew