Latest Issue

Allen Lane, £20orientisle

A tapestry still hanging in Hardwick Hall in Derbyshire shows the start of England’s discovery of Islam. The Prophet Muhammad lies at the feet of a personification of Faith (resembling Queen Elizabeth) about to be converted to Christianity. This triumphant image hid the truth: at the time, the Queen was engaged in negotiations with the Ottomans to form an anti-Spanish alliance—with England the junior partner.

As Jerry Brotton explores in his well-researched new book, Elizabeth had always been keen on dealing with the east. Soon after she was crowned, she…

Register today to continue reading

You’ve hit your limit of three articles in the last 30 days. To get seven more, simply enter your email address below.

You’ll also receive our free e-book Prospect’s Top Thinkers 2020 and our newsletter with the best new writing on politics, economics, literature and the arts.

Prospect may process your personal information for our legitimate business purposes, to provide you with newsletters, subscription offers and other relevant information.

Click here to learn more about these purposes and how we use your data. You will be able to opt-out of further contact on the next page and in all our communications.

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to

More From Prospect