|Big Blend e-News Sign Up! Trivia, Articles, Videos, Event News, Radio Shows and More!|
This site developed by Big Blend Magazine™. copyrighted since 1998. No part of it may be reproduced for any reason, with out written permission from Big Blend Magazine, P.O. Box 6201, North Hollywood, CA 91603. Opinions expressed by contributors are not necessarily that of this publication or any of its staff. We reserve the right to edit submittals. All subject matter is intended for general information only and not to be take as personal advice in any matter. Although every effort is made to be accurate, we cannot be held responsible for inaccuracies or plagiarized copy submitted to us by advertisers or contributors.
Glynn Burrows is the owner of Norfolk Tours in England -
Guy Fawkes & Bonfire Night in England
By Glynn G. Burrows -
Owner of Norfolk Tours in England
Remember, remember, the fifth of November -
I see no reason why gunpowder, treason -
On, or about, the 5th of November every year, we celebrate the foiling of a plot,
that very nearly
succeeded, to kill the King and Members of Parliament in 1605.
When I was a child, I remember that we all learned the story of Guy Fawkes, a man, who, together with a few others, filled a cellar under the houses of parliament, with gunpowder and was about to light the fuses when he was discovered. He was hanged, drawn and quartered and his head was displayed on a pole to warn others. The story was just the sort that little children loved, lots of hiding in cellars along with blood and gore, ending up with decapitated heads on poles!
We learned very little about why the plot was hatched, apart from the fact that Guy
Fawkes and his friends weren’t happy, but that didn’t really matter to us, we just
enjoyed the bonfire night spectacle and fireworks. Bonfire night usually included
us making an effigy of Guy himself, to put on the fire and lots of fireworks. We
also had hot soup and hot-
So, what is the real story behind this strange event in England, where we revert to burning an effigy of a man on a fire that we are all warming beside, while we enjoy a mug of hot soup and watching fireworks?
The events of November 1605 were rooted in the past hundred years. As England was removed from the Catholic Church by Henry VIII because the Pope wouldn’t allow him to divorce from Catherine of Aragon, there were many dissatisfied Catholics in the country. Queen Elizabeth I persecuted Catholics, was considered, by many, as a bastard and not rightfully Queen at all and, when James VI and I became King in 1603 many were hoping that his cousin Arabella Stuart would replace him and bring the Catholic Church to again become the accepted Church in England.
This was all not to be and we find a group plotting to blow up the Houses of Parliament, along with everyone in them, on 5th November 1605, to rid England of not only the King, but the parliament too.
On 26th October 1605, a letter was delivered to Lord Monteagle, telling him to go to his country estate and not attend the opening of Parliament because if he did he would be killed. Lord Monteagle showed the letter to the Privy Council and the King and the plotters were discovered during a search of the cellars.
During his stay in prison, before execution, Guy Fawkes was tortured and is believed to have given away his accomplices. The actual description of hanging, drawing an quartering is too awful to include here, but if you are sufficiently interested in it, a quick search on the internet will fill you in with detailed descriptions. I do say here that it isn’t a pleasant read, so do not look it up if you will be upset or offended by it.
Guy Fawkes was sensible enough to jump from the gallows, breaking his neck when he was hanged, so he escaped the horrors that awaited him. I expect his tortures had been enough.
Today, I feel sorry for Guy Fawkes, he was a man with beliefs and he was not alone in those beliefs. The Government and the Monarchy had perhaps treated them unfairly and, in those days, the only way to get a message across was to cause a stir. They definitely did that!