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For 400 years, the true story behind the fall of Sir Walter Ralegh, his conviction for high treason and his eventual beheading has been shrouded in mystery. Was he deliberately set up by the brilliant but untrustworthy Sir Robert Cecil? Why did his friend Lord Cobham denounce him at his trial? And how could this towering figure of the Elizabethan age be accused of conspiring with his old enemy Spain to overthrow the king and his government? This book draws on the author's legal background to unravel the extraordinary plots and intrigues that marked the last weeks of Elizabeth's reign and the first months of James's succession. In the bitter struggle for position, wealth and royal favour, only the most ruthless and devious could hope to win, and it was the dwarfish, hunch-backed Cecil who eventually prevailed over the swashbuckling Ralegh. But in the eyes of posterity, who was the real victor?

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