A Penny For The Guy . . .

Spectators gather around a bonfire at Himley Hall near Dudley, on 6 November 2010
Spectators gather around a bonfire at Himley Hall near Dudley, on 6 November 2010. Author: SJNikon – Sam Roberts. Wikimedia Commons

On November 5th last year I wrote this post about how the celebrations for Bonfire Night – or Guy Fawkes Night – in the U.K. have changed since my childhood in the 1950s. Yesterday, I posted about the history behind the celebrations and thought it might be an idea to re-post this to complement it. I’ve made a few minor changes to the original and added a couple of pictures (I had no idea I could use Wikipedia or Wikimedia images when I first started my blog!). So here it is...


Millie Thom

6_november_bonfire_from_flickr_user_sjnikon Spectators around a bonfire at Himley Park near Dudley Nov. 6. 2010. Author: S.J. Nikon -Sam Roberts. Commons

Remember, remember, the fifth of November,

Gunpowder, treason and plot.

I see no reason why gunpowder treason

Should ever be forgot.

This well known rhyme has been sung in Britain by generations of children as November 5th approached. It is still sung in primary schools as children are taught the historical significance of Guy Fawkes Night / Bonfire Night and why it is celebrated with bonfires and fireworks. Literacy, drama and art work of all types also stem from this colourful spectacle.

There’s more than enough online about Guido Fawkes and his co-conspirators, and why they wanted to blow up King James I and the Houses of Parliament, so I won’t elaborate on that. Guido suffered one of the most horrible deaths imaginable for his part in the plot – and being…

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