‘remember remember the 5th of November, gunpowder, treason and plot’
We all the know the story, or at least some parts of it. On the 5th of November 1605, Guy Fawkes along with twelve other Catholic nobles, attempted to blow up the Houses of Parliament where Protestant King James I would be present. Their intention was to kill the King and his family and to restore a Catholic monarch to the throne. We all know it went wrong, we all know it failed. But why do we still celebrate it today? Is it simply a love of fireworks and things that go bang? Or do people still have strong feelings about the plot?
Student life guide asked some students and graduates to find out.
Fire works are fun. But seriously the whole trying to blow up parliament was historical I guess, I mean it’s no Jesus coming back from the dead but it’s still historical right? I guess things change with time, the way we remember and do things, like e.g Christmas, Jesus wasn’t actually born on December 25th but we celebrate that date and created Father Christmas as well, I’m not too sure what the link between Santa and Jesus is, but still- we burn a Guy and light fireworks to celebrate how he didn’t win?
Was there a plot, or just a convenient excuse to round up all the leading Catholic Nobles in one swoop? Throw in the ambiguity of what evidence we have and it isn’t clear. I don’t honestly know enough about it to comment, probably like most people, even being a history student.
I always thought that we burn a Guy to symbolise how he was executed, and to celebrate that he didn’t succeed and kill lots of people. The fireworks are just a bit of added fun though, I guess? Maybe they could be to symbolise the gunpowder, but who knows, no one really.
I think it’s just another case of no one really knowing the history of it all but going along with it anyway. People just like to go out and watch pretty fireworks, some people probably know the rhyme, but most people don’t really care. It’s just a fun night out?
I think Bonfire Night is absolutely bonkers! If you tell anyone from outside the UK that we celebrate a day about a man who tried to blow up Parliament by having lots of fireworks and burning a massive effigy of him, they look at you like you are absolutely insane, and I find that pretty funny to be honest! I like how no one really knows what it is about, sums up holidays, like why do we have loads of chocolate at Easter, or presents at Christmas, and why do we burn a Guy on November 5th?