Spanish Armada succeeds

If the Spanish allow it, massive early Protestant immigration to North America. Early American independence as a kingdom/empire under the closest relatives of Elizabeth to escape the Spanish. Possibly under a completely different family.
I thought it was almost impossible for the Armada to succeed? Even if they had had the weather right and the English didn't attack, there were no ports capable of handling the Armada in the Netherlands, where it was supposed to pick up the bulk of the invading force. Even if it had landed, the force would have been in a strange nation, hundreds of miles from Spain, and surrounded by hostile Englishmen....
Hmm... I've read the exact opposite, in the second What If book... that author claimed the Armada had a fair chance of success, but that it was doomed by the spanish king's meddlings....
Could we see an English Inquisition?

With Henry VII and Henry VIII murdering almost everyone of Plantagenet blood, the only English royals apart from Elizabeth were Mary, Queen of Scots and James Stuart. There were some Grey sisters mouldering in the tower due to inappopriate marriages, hardly inspiring.

France would probably be less powerful hemmed in by Spain and the Hapsburgs
Many people in England in 1588 could still remember the days of Queen Mary, and had been Catholic in that time, or at least pretended to be. Therefore, I think there is a reasonable chance that a large part of the population will return to the Catholic faith. Afterwards, the Hugenots in France and the Dutch are probably doomed, and it is quite possible that the combination of Spain and England will dominate Europe, especially when considering the relationship of Philipp II. with the Habsburg Empire.

The Protestants will possibly mainly be restricted to Scandinavia as I do not think that the Catholic powers would bother with an invasion in Northern Europe. What happens in Germany is still another question. The 30 years war or similar clashes might well occur earlier, and probably there will be sufficient Protestant supporters to hold at least some ground.

Overall, I think the world will be dominated by the Church and fear of the Inquisition. Scientific progress is probably slower than OTL.
I think they did had a chance of achieving it. If they had forgotten about picking first the Flanders Army and had gone for the English fleet they could have surprised it. The English did not have an impressive army so an small force could have taken London. A complete conquest of England was out of the question, but maybe with support of catholic englishmen they could have managed to bring England back to catholicism and a change of dinasty. I do not think the Inquisition would have been settled in England, as it was not in Flanders nor in any other european territory of the Hispanic Monarchy.

This way the situation would have been extremely hard for the Dutch and the Huguenots. Without English support and with civil war ravaging France the Tercios could have concentrated on taking the Dutch rebel provinces and then they could have entered France to put a friendlier french King on the throne.

As for longer consequences like technological development, I do not think it would have affected too much. The necessities of war and trade would have pressed and I think we would have seen a similar development.
The United Kingdom never exists. Instead England is a small backwater nation on the edge of things, while the Catholics exploit the New World. Countered by the Habsburgs and Spain there is a long period of peace, except for the occassional wars on the war-torn and repressed British Isles.
England is eventually granted freedom by the Spanish on the condition of no colonies, no navy and no control over Ireland and Scotland. For the next few centuries, as the Catholics take over the Western and Southern Hemispheres, except for the French invasion of Kent after hostilities between the two reached breaking point (The French claimed that south of the Thames was their 'natural border' and got it) and the Welsh revolution, the disgruntled English remain divided, angry and quiet for 2 centuries.
After a strong military Englishman reunites the military despots of his country, and screaming revenge to retake Wessex, allies with the new Germanic Empire in a holy war to right all the wrongs against Spain and France....
The Armada's chances were very bad.

Especially when they finally got through the channel to link up with the Duke of Parma in the Netherlands and found out he had done nothing to prepare and had no transports available to move his army over to England.

Of course, in the long run the genealogical collapse of the Hapsburgs can not be delayed, and the more nations under their thumb, the worse it's going to be. Not to mention the fate of the Catholic Church as it becomes increasingly seen as the Hapsburg Church.

Long term effects:

Holland: Very happy. Spain was at the end of its rope. There is simply no way needing to fight a major war and occupation in England(and Scotland?) is not going to ease the pressure on them. Quite probable that Spain is also forced to divert resources into France.

France: Royally screwed. The Protestants never settle down and become loyalists to the king, instead ultimately carving their own nation out of the French southwest. Given the leadership of Henry of Navarre, and the bumbling incompetence of his rival for the crown, France will be a second-class power, stripped of the southwest and probably Brittany, having never gained the territories of Louis XIV.

No doubt some 20th century synod upsets historians by agreeing Henry of Navarre was the rightful king and the church's failiure to support him is what helped to end the greatness of France.

Spain: No real change, except that when the collapse comes in the mid-17th Century, they have a sea of enemies and no real hope. Quite possibly we even see revolts supported, leaving not only the restoration of Portugal but of Aragon as well. Possible loss of some colonies sooner, or even a few never lost in OTL.

Ireland: Long term disaster. For 10 to 50 years they are better off, and enjoy some fame/infamy as mercenaries, but when the tide turns... Let's just say the English have international Protestant support in subsequent brutality. Wouldn't rule out even worse treatment, probably greater effort to import Protestants and crush the church, perhaps we speak of the nine counties today.

Scotland: Looked to as organizer of English liberation, probably enjoys a higher position in theory to this day, possibly even in reality. If nothing else, a decision in the 17th Century to base the New Model Army more heavily on Scots troops could be interesting.

England: Long period of struggle and guerilla activity, many ships and refugees based in Holland and/or Scotland. Extremely nasty when Spainish power collapses, probably under Philip II's successor. No doubt this period 1588 to the 1630s is filled with duelling historical claims of atrocities given and received.

30 Year War: The Catholic mainstay, the Hapsburgs, have been forced into more costly wars devouring money and men at a much higher rater since 1588 and now this? France is probably not hostile but count England and Scotland on the list of enemies, probably Dutch involvment as well in a Grand Protestant Alliance. The war goes worse for the Catholics.

The concept of nationalism has taken at least a small hit as thousands of Protestant veterans eagerly sell their services to whichever Protestant leader needs them. This does not help the Germans.

Prussia: The war ended before they could recover from the disasters of the first half. No spoils. Prussia becomes a minor player.

Sweden: Receives some lands Prussia would have gotten. An important player in northern Germany for a long time.

Russia: Who can say? Possibly the Protestant/Catholic wars enable Peter the Great to carve out his window on the west? Or the Protestant League comes down on him and Russia remains a backward semi-Asiatic power?

Holland: Longer war but under less consistent degree of pressure. Probably a few more colonies, perhaps absorbing the Flemish speaking areas of Belgium and even portions of Hanover(NW Germany). When the century of greatness ends, a larger and more significant power.

Belgian Congo: No Belgium, no Congo. Not that this helps Africa much.

France: About 20-25% of 1588 France is the Kingdom of Navarre. Alsace-Lorraine is German. The border improvements vis a vis Spanish Netherlands and NW Italy also never happened. The monarchy is never able to become absolute, given the many enemies always prepared to support a rebellious noble. High probability at least one additional province(Brittany?) hostile to the House of Guise is able to set up independently.

Scotland: Earlier association with England but since Scotland is the liberator and leading partner...probably a greater status in the UK, possibly even more of Ireland and Northern England settled by Scots.

England: Short-term bloodbath, long-term rise to power as Holland did, literally over the dead body of Spanish colonies, Spanish trade, and the Spanish silver fleet. Probable earlier/larger scale colonization of North America. A military force in Europe earlier.

The United States: The big question is given my assumptions regarding a slight decline in nationalism, and a higher degree of respect for Scotland from England, does this equate to a compromise and settlement between King George III and the Continental Congress/North American Sub-Parliament?
The Spanish would have faced a prolonger struggle such as they faced in Holland. It is perfectly possible to argue that this would have brought down Spain faster due to the massive ongoing commitment of resources required.

It has been argued that England was mostly Catholic until the 1570s. However, I do not see Catholicism seeing a revival once associated with alien oppression.Nor did Spanish conquest did not ultimately hold back Dutch economic or colonial development.
Very little need have changed. The Spanish would have put the Stuarts on the throne to ensure legitimacy, these would ultimately hae been deposed by their subjects as inept Catholics. Intriguing England might have stayed a republic, or maybe one of Charles Stuart's bastard offspring would have eyed his chance and converted to protestantism.
I still do not think the spanish king would involve himself in a long war there. I think he would just occupy London, depose Elizabeth, put a Stuart on the throne. They would gain no English fleet harassing all around, no support to dutch rebels and free hands to act in France in support of a Catholic candidate to the throne. The price would have been money contributions to the Stuarts in order to stay on the throne and probably german mercenary troops.

When Philip II was regent of England he was extremely careful not to enrage his new subjects. No spanish troops came with him, no Inquisition, just a few noblemen.
I am not sure the Spanish king has much of a choice, i am sure he did not much fancy a long war in the Netherlands after all.
If nothing else the French would have sponsored a revolt.

It is no longer the 1540s and the Spanish attitude cannot be expected to be the same, in fact a light touch policy is probably not possible
in those years france could not support revolt anywhere. they had one civil war at home. probably some german prince or denmark

Felipe ii intended mainly to bring back england to catholicism, and i do not think he was so silly to think he could do it with inquisition or a long war

it is odd how different people that tried to take england where fascinated by it (Felipe ii, Napoleon, Hitler)
I wonder, are there any possible Catholic relatives of Elizabeth who could become Monarch of England? If not, Phillip may try to put a Habsburg on the throne, which I dont think would go too well. I'm not convinced he would simply add "King of England" to his title, however.
Imajin said:
I wonder, are there any possible Catholic relatives of Elizabeth who could become Monarch of England? If not, Phillip may try to put a Habsburg on the throne, which I dont think would go too well. I'm not convinced he would simply add "King of England" to his title, however.
Queen Mary of Scots...duh
Queen Mary of Scots...duh

Her untimely demise on 8 February 1587 might present an obstacle... duh :)

But yes, it would be the Stuart family
considering how much difficulty they had in OTL it seems likely that there task would be even harder if still Catholic and put in power illegitimately

so there would be a long struggle...
Wozza said:
...But yes, it would be the Stuart family
considering how much difficulty they had in OTL it seems likely that there task would be even harder if still Catholic and put in power illegitimately
I thought James VI was raised a Protestant? (He was Mary's son and heir wasn't he?)