"The Queen (a woman with a man's courage), though she was daily deserted by some of her own party, was nowise dismayed; but keeping possession of the garrison, made sallies against the enemy, planned everything, and surveyed everything with her own eyes."
- English bishop John Jewel, praising Scottish queen regent Mary of Guise for her conduct in personally
leading Scottish and French troops against the rebellious Protestant Lords of the Congregation
In the year AD 1559...
The lengthy Italian Wars finally come to an end when France makes peace with England and Spain in the Peace of Cateau Cambrésis. France gives up most of its gains in Italy, including Savoy, retaining only Saluzzo, but keeps the three Lorraine bishoprics of Metz, Toul, and Verdun, as well as the French town of Calais, formerly held by the English.
Dravya Shah founds the Gurkha Kingdom in what is now Nepal.
Pope Paul IV publishes his Index Librorum Prohibitorum, also known as the Pauline Index - a list of books banned by the Catholic Church as heretical.
John Calvin founds the University of Geneva as a Calvinist theological seminary.
The clitoris is "discovered" (at least by males) and described for the first time by Italian physician Realdo Colombo, who describes it as "the seat of woman's delight" in his 1559 book De re anatomica.
- Elizabeth I is crowned queen of England, following the death of her half-sister Mary I (aka "Bloody Mary") the year before. Elizabeth immediately sets about establishing the Church of England, passing the Act of Supremacy to restore crown control over the church (the original Act of Supremacy passed by Henry VIII had been repealed by the pro-Catholic Mary), as well as the Act of Uniformity, which standardizes the order of prayer to be used in the English Book of Common Prayer and imposes a fine of 12 pence (about 12 pounds today) on anyone who fails to attend church at least once a week. Together these two acts will become remembered as the
Elizabethan Religious Settlement.
- The ongoing Scottish Reformation pits Presbyterian theologian John Knox and the Protestant Lords of the Congregation, who hope to turn Scotland Protestant and move it closer to England, against the forces of Scottish queen regent Mary of Guise, who hopes to keep Scotland Catholic, independent of England, and closely allied to France.
- The enthronement of Protestant English queen Elizabeth I has emboldened the Protestants in Scotland.
- On January 1, an anonymous tract called the Beggar's Summons, purporting to have been written by actual beggars, is affixed to the doors of all of the friaries in Scotland, demanding that the Catholic friars remove themselves from the realm, on the grounds that their property has been stolen from the poor of Scotland.
- In May, Scottish Protestant theologian John Knox returns to Scotland from exile and triumphantly preaches an allegorical sermon in Perth on Christ's Cleansing of the Temple. The Congregation responds by looting and pillaging Catholic churches and friaries. When Mary of Guise sends troops to restore order, the Lords raise troops of their own in response, and both sides prepare for armed conflict.
- After a series of back-and-forth skirmishes, the arrival of 1,800 French troops on Scotish soil swings the momentum in favor of the queen and puts the Lords on the defensive.
- However, English secret agents do manage to smuggle Scottish nobleman James Hamilton, 3rd Earl of Arran back into Scotland to take leadership of the Protestant forces.
These people were born in 1559:
These people died in 1559:
1558 - 1559 - 1560
How they were made