Did You Know? Remember, remember!

Rishav Dasgupta Screen Shot 2017-01-18 at 8.21.46 PM Remember, remember!    The fifth of November,    The Gunpowder treason and plot;    I know of no reason    Why the Gunpowder treason    Should ever be forgot! There was a time in English history when one could rent a cellar under the Houses of Parliament. Those days are gone, but it is important to note that Stuart England was very peaceful with its public executions and burnings, very unlike our current times. One person in particular is remembered for his connection to this cellar- Guy Fawkes. He was the Catholic son of a Protestant proctor from York, who served in the military. However, it was not his life he was remembered for, but rather his attempt to take the selfsame from others. Fawkes was afraid that soon Catholicism would be removed from England because of the growth of a new Protestant aristocracy. For this reason, he took up arms. Well, not exactly. First, he went to the pub. The Duck and Drake, to be precise. There he drank a fair bit (of god knows what) and was moved to kill the King. I mean the King and his cabinet. Actually (after a few more drinks), the entire parliament. After the night out, Fawkes and his friends loaded nigh on four and twenty barrels of gunpowder into the cellar. It was about to be “lit”. However, there was a problem. One of the conspirators had a friend in Parliament and wanted to save him. He wrote his friend, Lord Monteagle, a letter asking the Baron to “retyre youre self into yowre contee whence yow maye expect the event in safti for … they shall receyve a terrible blowe this parlyment”. Bad idea. Soon the plot was revealed and Fawkes was tortured along with his comrades. While Fawkes initially claimed to be John Johnson (seriously?) he eventually gave up and confessed. To prevent further plots like the Gunpowder Plot, Fawkes and his friends were hanged, drawn and quartered. At the end of the day the British learned an important lesson—don’t let a drunkard rent your cellar!]]>