Queen Elizabeth I’s Vast Spy Network Was The First Surveillance State | Atlas Obscura

A portrait of Queen Elizabeth I, c. 1585. PUBLIC DOMAIN

In a lowly tavern in an English town in the 1580s, a group of men met to organize the assassination of their monarch, Queen Elizabeth I. The head of the operation, Anthony Babington, planned to rescue and crown Mary of Scotland, an alternative heir to the English throne who had been imprisoned in the castle dungeon for 20 years. He detailed the plan to Mary as a cipher—a secret note in code— and snuck it to her in…

Source: Queen Elizabeth I’s Vast Spy Network Was The First Surveillance State | Atlas Obscura

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