Thursday, November 06, 2008

Guy Fawkes Night!

November 5th

I was talking with our good friend Diana last night and she mentioned that she and Roy met 53 years ago on Guy Fawkes night in England. We in the United States are often not familiar with Guy Fawkes. This is a special celebration day in England where Guy's effigy is burned in a bonfire and fireworks are commonly set off.

Guy Fawkes (13 April 1570 – 31 January 1606) sometimes known as Guido Fawkes, was a member of a group of English Roman Catholic revolutionaries who planned to carry out the Gunpowder Plot. The Gunpowder Conspiracy of 1605, or the Powder Treason or Gunpowder Plot, as it was known at the time, was a failed assassination attempt by a group of provincial English Catholics against King James I of England and VI of Scotland. The plot intended to kill the king, his family, and most of the Protestant aristocracy in a single attack by blowing up the Houses of Parliament during the State Opening on 5 November 1605. The conspirators had also planned to abduct the royal children, not present in Parliament, and incite a popular revolt in the Midlands.

Although Robert Catesby was the lead figure in devising the actual plot, Fawkes was put in charge of executing the plan due to his military and explosives experience. The plot was foiled shortly before its intended completion, as Fawkes was captured while guarding the gunpowder on that dark night in November. Suspicion was aroused by his wearing of a coat, boots and spurs, as if he intended to leave very quickly in order to escape.

Fawkes has left a lasting mark on history and popular culture. Bonfire Night is a commemorative celebration held in Great Britain (also occasionally in Northern Ireland) and some parts of the Commonwealth on November 5 in which people have large bonfires and let off fireworks.

Roy was always eager to relate the story of Guy Fawkes and especially the story of one evening during the Fawkes celebration when he met the young lass who would become his wife, friend, and life mate. Roy is gone now, but I always feel that he is near us in spirit.


Post a Comment

<< Home