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England celebrates Guy Fawkes Day

Every 5th November the thwarted attempted of Guy Fawkes and his gang to blow up the Houses of Parliament is celebrated.Every year on 5th November, England celebrates Guy Fawkes Day.

In the year 1605 Guy Fawkes and his gang of conspirators put some barrels of gunpowder into the cellar at the Houses of Parliament. They intended to kill the English King James and his supporters. The reason for this terrorist activity was that Guy Fawkes was a Roman Catholic and he felt that Catholics were being treated badly and unfairly by the government. Queen Elizabeth I had made laws against the Roman Catholic Church and its followers and they hoped that King James I would repeal the laws and make things better, but he did not do this.

Anyone who refused to attend the Protestant Church of England on a Sunday and on religious festival days was fined. The Catholics had to follow their own religion in secret for fear of persecution. When James I came to the throne they were more than happy because they thought the law against Catholics would be repealed. However, James I made even more laws and gave them fewer rights.

A band of men which included Guy Fawkes, led by Robert Catesby, planned to blow up Houses of Parliament which is the place where English laws are made. Their idea was simple and they just waited until Parliament was opened by the King and went in to put explosives in the basement.

Guy Fawkes himself was supposed to take care of the gunpowder barrels and light the fuse when it was time to blow the whole thing sky high. On 5th November, some soldiers discovered Guy Fawkes standing by the powder barrels. At first Guy refused to name his fellow plotters but in the end, after a lot of torture, he named them all.

When King James I was told about this he realised that a threat to his life had been thwarted, he decreed that a huge bonfire should be lit every 5th November. The ceremony to mark the occasion is still celebrated today with bonfires and fireworks.

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