Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography

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Guy Fawkes was chosen to play a lead role in the plot; he was chosen because of his mixture of piety and professionalism. The plotters rented a space underneath Parliament and they smuggled in many barrels of gunpowder. Guy Fawkes was planning to light the fuse when King James was in attendance for the opening of Parliament. However, at the last minute, the plot was betrayed and soldiers went to the cellar to find Guy Fawkes with matches in his hands, next to the gunpowder.

Fawkes tried to blow the powder up straight away, but he was overpowered before he had a chance. Guy Fawkes was taken to the Tower of London where he was tortured on the rack; this torture caused him to reveal the name of those involved in the plot, and all the main protagonists were caught. Last updated 28 Feb Famous English people — Famous English men and women. Guy Fawkes was hung, drawn and quartered outside parliament on the 31st January Herbert's house, a widow that dwells on the backside of St.

He soon left this accommodation when his landlady suspected his involvement with Catholics.

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On 18 October he travelled to White Webbs for a meeting with Catesby, Thomas Wintour, and Francis Tresham to discuss how certain Catholic peers could be excluded from the explosion. Concern quickly erupted amongst the conspirators, but the letter's apparent vagueness prompted Catesby to continue with their plans. On Wednesday 30 October, Fawkes, apparently ignorant of the letter's existence inspected the cellar again and satisfied himself that the gunpowder was still in place and had not been disturbed.

On Sunday 3 November, a few of the leading conspirators met in London and agreed that the authorities were still unaware of their actions. However, all except Fawkes made plans for a speedy exit from London. Fawkes had agreed to watch the cellar by himself, having already been given the task of firing the powder, undoubtedly because of his munitions experience in the Low Countries where he had been taught how to "fire a slow train".


His orders were to embark for Flanders as soon as the powder was fired, and to spread the news of the explosion on the continent. In the cellar they came upon an unusually large pile of billets and faggots, and perceived Fawkes whom they described as "a very bad and desperate fellow". They asked who claimed the pile, and Fawkes replied that it was Thomas Percy's in whose employment he worked.

They reported these details to the King, and believing, by the look of Fawkes "he seemed to be a man shrewd enough, but up to no good", they again searched the cellar, a little before midnight the following night, this time led by Sir Thomas Knyvett, a Westminster magistrate and Gentleman of the Privy Chamber. Fawkes had gone forth to warn Percy that same day, but returned to his post before night.

Guy Fawkes Day: A Brief History

Once again, the pile of billets and faggots was searched and the powder discovered, and this time Fawkes was arrested. On his person they discovered a watch, slow matches and touchwood. Fawkes later declared that had he been in the cellar when Knyvett entered it he would have "blown him up, house, himself, and all". Early in the morning of 5 November, the Privy Council met in the King's bedchamber, and Fawkes was brought in under guard. He declined to give any information beyond that his name was Johnson and he was a servant of Thomas Percy.

Further interrogations that day revealed little more than his apparent xenophobia. When questioned by the King how he could conspire such a hideous treason, Fawkes replied that a dangerous disease required a desperate remedy, and that his intentions were to blow the Scotsmen present back into Scotland. King James indicated in a letter of 6 November that "The gentler tortours are to be first used unto him, et sic per gradus ad mia tenditur [and so by degrees proceeding to the worst], and so God speed your goode worke", as it [torture] was contrary to English common law, unless authorised by the King or Privy Council.

Guy Fawkes - Wikipedia

Eventually on 7 November Guido's spirit broke and he confessed his real name and that the plot was confined to five men. The following day he recounted the events of the conspiracy, without naming names, then on the 9 November he named his fellow plotters, having heard that some of them had already been arrested at Holbeche. Guido's final signature, a barely legible scrawl, is testament to his suffering.

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There is no direct evidence as to what tortures were used on Guy Fawkes, although it is almost certain that they included the manacles, and probably also the rack. On Monday 27 January , the day of the capture of Edward Oldcorne and Henry Garnet, the trial of the eight surviving conspirators began in Westminster Hall.

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It was a trial in name only, for a guilty verdict had certainly already been handed down. The conspirators pleaded not guilty, a plea which caused some consternation amongst those present. Fawkes later explained that his objection was to the implication that the "seducing Jesuits" were the principal offenders. On Friday, 31 January , Fawkes, Thomas Wintour, Ambrose Rookwood and Robert Keyes were taken to the Old Palace Yard at Westminster and hanged, drawn and quartered "in the very place which they had planned to demolish in order to hammer home the message of their wickedness".

Thomas Wintour was followed by Rookwood and then by Keyes.

Guido, the "romantic caped figure of such evil villainy" came last. His body being weak with the torture and sickness he was scarce able to go up the ladder, yet with much ado, by the help of the hangman, went high enough to break his neck by the fall.


He made no speech, but with his crosses and idle ceremonies made his end upon the gallows and the block, to the great joy of all the beholders that the land was ended of so wicked a villainy". David Jardine, in his book "A Narrative of the Gunpowder Plot" , says that "according to the accounts of him, he is not to be regarded as a mercenary ruffian, ready for hire to do any deed of blood; but as a zealot, misled by misguided fanaticism, who was, however, by no means destitute of piety or humanity".

Philip Caraman Gerard, John, S. Aims of the Gunpowder Plot Society The aims of the Gunpowder Plot Society are to promote and encourage research on all aspects of the Gunpowder Plot by providing a central repository for information, source material, and research assistance, as well as to provide an open forum for discussion through our mailing list and newsletters.

Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography
Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography
Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography
Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography
Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography
Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography
Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography
Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography Guy Fawkes - A Short Biography

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